The equilibrium thermal decomposition curve of dolomite has been determined up to a CO2 pressure of 20,000 lb/in.2, at which pressure dolomite decomposes at 857??C. Equilibrium was approached from both directions, by the breakdown and by the solid-state synthesis of dolomite. At elevated temperatures and pressures, calcites in equilibrium with periclase as well as those in equilibrium with dolomite contain Mg in solid solution. In the former, the Mg content increases with increasing CO2 pressure, and decreases with increasing temperature. In the latter, it is a function of temperature only. The exsolution curve of dolomite and magnesian calcite has been determined between 500?? and 800??C; at 500?? dolomite is in equilibrium with a magnesian calcite containing ~6 mol per cent MgCO2; at 800??, ~22 mol per cent. There appears to be a small but real deviation from the ideal 1 : 1 Ca : Mg ratio of dolomite, in the direction of excess Ca, for material in equilibrium with magnesian calcite at high temperature. The experimental findings indicate that very little Mg is stable in the calcites of sedimentary environments, but that an appreciable amount is stable under higher-temperature metamorphic conditions, if sufficient CO2 pressure is maintained. ?? 1955.
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Dolomite-magnesian calcite relations at elevated temperatures and CO2 pressures