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Fe-Ni-S-O layer phase in C2M carbonaceous chondrites—a hydrous sulphide?


It has been suggested1,2 that the matrix minerals of type C2M carbonaceous meteorites are the products of aqueous alteration in a parent-body regolith. Phases occur within the matrix which differ from those commonly found in cases of terrestrial aqueous alteration and provide clues to the history of the meteorites. Poorly-characterized phases (PCP)3 containing Fe, Ni, S, O and sometimes Cr, were first noted in the Murchison meteorite. Barber4 found that amongst PCP there was a layer phase, rich in Fe, Ni, S and thought to contain oxygen, commonly having a fibrous or platey morphology, with a layer spacing of approximately 10.8 and 5.4 Å. We report here new data on this phase, obtained by high resolution electron microscopy, dispersive X-ray spectrometry and electron energy loss spectrometry, and we conclude that it is probably a hydrous sulphide.

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Barber, D., Bourdillon, A. & Freeman, L. Fe-Ni-S-O layer phase in C2M carbonaceous chondrites—a hydrous sulphide?. Nature 305, 295–297 (1983).

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