High-pressure minerals in shocked meteorites.

Tomioka, N. and Miyahara, M.

Meteoritics & Planetary Science. doi: 10.1111/maps.12902


“Heavily shocked meteorites contain various types of high-pressure polymorphs of major minerals (olivine, pyroxene, feldspar, and quartz) and accessory minerals (chromite and Ca phosphate). These high-pressure minerals are micron to submicron sized and occur within and in the vicinity of shock-induced melt veins and melt pockets in chondrites and lunar, howardite–eucrite–diogenite (HED), and Martian meteorites. Their occurrence suggests two types of formation mechanisms (1) solid-state high-pressure transformation of the host-rock minerals into monomineralic polycrystalline aggregates, and (2) crystallization of chondritic or monomineralic melts under high pressure. Based on experimentally determined phase relations, their formation pressures are limited to the pressure range up to ~25 GPa. Textural, crystallographic, and chemical characteristics of high-pressure minerals provide clues about the impact events of meteorite parent bodies, including their size and mutual collision velocities and about the mineralogy of deep planetary interiors. The aim of this article is to review and summarize the findings on natural high-pressure minerals in shocked meteorites that have been reported over the past 50 years.”