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Title: Discovery of the recoverable high-pressure iron oxide Fe[subscript 4]O[subscript 5]

Phases of the iron-oxygen binary system are significant to most scientific disciplines, directly affecting planetary evolution, life, and technology. Iron oxides have unique electronic properties and strongly interact with the environment, particularly through redox reactions. The iron-oxygen phase diagram therefore has been among the most thoroughly investigated, yet it still holds striking findings. Here, we report the discovery of an iron oxide with formula Fe{sub 4}O{sub 5}, synthesized at high pressure and temperature. The previously undescribed phase, stable from 5 to at least 30 GPa, is recoverable to ambient conditions. First-principles calculations confirm that the iron oxide here described is energetically more stable than FeO + Fe{sub 3}O{sub 4} at pressure greater than 10 GPa. The calculated lattice constants, equation of states, and atomic coordinates are in excellent agreement with experimental data, confirming the synthesis of Fe{sub 4}O{sub 5}. Given the conditions of stability and its composition, Fe{sub 4}O{sub 5} is a plausible accessory mineral of the Earth's upper mantle. The phase has strong ferrimagnetic character comparable to magnetite. The ability to synthesize the material at accessible conditions and recover it at ambient conditions, along with its physical properties, suggests a potential interest in Fe{sub 4}O{sub 5} for technological applications.
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA; Journal Volume: 108; Journal Issue: (42) ; 10, 2011
Research Org:
Advanced Photon Source (APS), Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), Argonne, IL (US)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States