Experimental study of trace element partitioning between enstatite and melt in enstatite chondrites at low oxygen fugacities and 5GPa

Camille Cartier*, Tahar Hammouda, Régis Doucelance, Maud Boyet, Jean Luc Devidal, Bertrand Moine

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


In order to investigate the influence of very reducing conditions, we report enstatite-melt trace element partition coefficients (D) obtained on enstatite chondrite material at 5GPa and under oxygen fugacities (fO2) ranging between 0.8 and 8.2log units below the iron-wustite (IW) buffer. Experiments were conducted in a multianvil apparatus between 1580 and 1850°C, using doped (Sc, V, REE, HFSE, U, Th) starting materials. We used a two-site lattice strain model and a Monte-Carlo-type approach to model experimentally determined partition coefficient data. The model can fit our partitioning data, i.e. trace elements repartition in enstatite, which provides evidence for the attainment of equilibrium in our experiments. The precision on the lattice strain model parameters obtained from modelling does not enable determination of the influence of intensive parameters on crystal chemical partitioning, within our range of conditions (fO2, P, T, composition). We document the effect of variable oxygen fugacity on the partitioning of multivalent elements. Cr and V, which are trivalent in the pyroxene at around IW-1 are reduced to 2+ state with increasingly reducing conditions, thus affecting their partition coefficients. In our range of redox conditions Ti is always present as a mixture between 4+ and 3+ states. However the Ti3+-Ti4+ ratio increases strongly with increasingly reducing conditions. Moreover in highly reducing conditions, Nb and Ta, that usually are pentavalent in magmatic systems, appear to be reduced to lower valence species, which may be Nb2+ and Ta3+. We propose a new proxy for fO2 based on D(Cr)/D(V). Our new data extend the redox range covered by previous studies and allows this proxy to be used in the whole range of redox conditions of the solar system objects. We selected trace-element literature data of six chondrules on the criterion of their equilibrium. Applying the proxy to opx-matrix systems, we estimated that three type I chondrules have equilibrated at IW-7±1, one type I chondrule at IW-4±1, and two type II chondrules at IW+3±1. This first accurate estimation of enstatite-melt fO2 for type I chondrules is very close to CAI values.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-187
Number of pages21
JournalGeochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2014
Externally publishedYes


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