Tensile strengths of hydrous vesicular glasses

An experimental study

C. Romano, J. E. Mungall, Thomas Sharp, D. B. Dingwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We have measured the pressures of decrepitation of vesicles in synthetic glasses of feldspar compositions (NaAlSi3O8-KAlSi3O3). Vesicles filled with Xe do not decrepitate at internal pressures of 160 MPa, indicating that the unflawed surface of the vesicle wall has an intrinsic strength >80 MPa. Vesicles containing CO2 escaped decrepitation and displayed ductile deformation when the Tg was reached at the maximum P of 200 MPa (indicating an intrinsic strength higher than 100 MPa). Vesicles containing H2O showed dramatically reduced strength, decrepitating at internal pressures on the order of 1-5 MPa. The H2O-filled vesicles leaked slowly over periods of several weeks or months. The relative stability of the inclusions is strongly dependent on the quench rate, with rapidly quenched inclusions showing greater stability over long periods of time. Microscopic examination revealed the presence of radial microfractures in the walls of H2O-filled vesicles. We account for the micro fracturing with reference to recent studies of chemical-gradient stress. Our observations may account for a variety of phenomena, which occur wherever hydrous vesicular glasses are formed, including explosive decompression of vesicular glassy rock in near-surface volcanic environments, spontaneous decrepitation of vesicular basaltic glass dredged from the seafloor ("popping rocks"), and rapid loss of H2O from synthetic vesicular glasses produced in laboratory experiments investigating fluid-melt phase equilibria.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1148-1154
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Mineralogist
Volume81
Issue number9-10
StatePublished - Sep 1996
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

vesicle
tensile strength
Tensile strength
experimental study
glass
Glass
internal pressure
explosive decompression
Rocks
inclusions
rocks
fracturing
high strength
Phase equilibria
volcanology
Microscopic examination
examination
ductile deformation
gradients
phase equilibrium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Geophysics

Cite this

Romano, C., Mungall, J. E., Sharp, T., & Dingwell, D. B. (1996). Tensile strengths of hydrous vesicular glasses: An experimental study. American Mineralogist, 81(9-10), 1148-1154.

Tensile strengths of hydrous vesicular glasses : An experimental study. / Romano, C.; Mungall, J. E.; Sharp, Thomas; Dingwell, D. B.

In: American Mineralogist, Vol. 81, No. 9-10, 09.1996, p. 1148-1154.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Romano, C, Mungall, JE, Sharp, T & Dingwell, DB 1996, 'Tensile strengths of hydrous vesicular glasses: An experimental study', American Mineralogist, vol. 81, no. 9-10, pp. 1148-1154.
Romano C, Mungall JE, Sharp T, Dingwell DB. Tensile strengths of hydrous vesicular glasses: An experimental study. American Mineralogist. 1996 Sep;81(9-10):1148-1154.
Romano, C. ; Mungall, J. E. ; Sharp, Thomas ; Dingwell, D. B. / Tensile strengths of hydrous vesicular glasses : An experimental study. In: American Mineralogist. 1996 ; Vol. 81, No. 9-10. pp. 1148-1154.
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