Composition of the core, I. Solubility of oxygen in molten iron at high temperatures

E. Ohtani, A. E. Ringwood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Experiments on the solubility of FeO in molten iron have been carried out at temperatures between 2100 and 2550°C. The results show that liquid FeO is extensively soluble in molten iron at 2500°C and indicate that they probably become completely miscible above 2800°C. Liquid iron in equilibrium with crystalline magnesiowüstite (Mg0.8Fe0.2)O which is believed to be an important mineral in the lower mantle, would dissolve about 14 mol.% of FeO at 2500°C and 40 mol.% of FeO at 2800°C. The geochemical implications of these results are discussed. It is concluded that the outer core probably contains a large amount of dissolved FeO and that oxygen is probably the principal light element in the outer core.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-93
Number of pages9
JournalEarth and Planetary Science Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1984 Nov

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science


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