Silica polymorphs, glass and melt: An in situ high temperature XAS study at the Si K-edge

D. de Ligny, D. R. Neuville, L. Cormier, J. Roux, G. S. Henderson, G. Panczer, S. Shoval, A. M. Flank, P. Lagarde

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


High temperature X-ray absorption spectra at the Si K-edge were obtained for SiO2 quartz from room temperature up to 2030 K. Important modifications are observed for the XANES spectra. These change are related to rearrangements of the SiO4 tetrahedra beyond the short-range correlations. To interpret these spectral evolutions, SiO2 polymorph samples were observed at room temperature and XANES calculations using FDMNES were performed. Very strong differences are shown between the different polymorphs even between α and β phases for which only small displacive angle rotations of the SiO4 tetrahadra occurs. Therefore the quartz α to β transition could be identified at its expected temperature, 842 K. A badly defined transition toward β-cristobalite is observed between 1670 and 1940 K. The dynamics of this totally reconstructive transition was further investigated on heat treated cherts. Finally the liquid is reached around 2000 K. Many similarities were observed on SiO2 between its glass at room temperature, β-cristobalite and liquid at high temperature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1099-1102
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Non-Crystalline Solids
Issue number18-21
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2009


  • Geology
  • Medium-range order
  • Microcrystallinity
  • Phases and equilibria
  • Quartz
  • Short-range order
  • Silica
  • Synchrotron radiation
  • X-ray absorption


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