Experimental investigation of molecular solids and vanadium at high pressure and temperature

University dissertation from Stockholm : Department of Physics, Stockholm University

Abstract: Understanding high pressure effects on simple molecular system is of great interest for condensed matter science and geophysics. Accessing the static pressure and temperature regions found in planetary interiors is made possible by the development of the Diamond Anvil Cell technique. We developed a double sided resistive heating method for the membrane DAC operating in low pressure (<0.5 mTorr) pressure environment requiring only 175 W input power to reach sample temperatures up to 1300 K. We applied this technique successfully to study molecular solids at high temperatures, such as H2, N2 and CO2. We made an attempt to determine the melting line of hydrogen and present data up to 26 GPa in agreement with literature. Raman spectroscopy of Nitrogen indicates a high stability of the ε molecular phase, while θ phase is only accessible via certain P, T paths. Studies of solid CO2 at high pressure and temperature lead to the discovery of a six-fold coordinated stishovite-like phase VI, obtained by isothermal compression of associated CO2-II above 50 GPa at 530-650 K, or by isobaric heating of CO2-III above 55 GPa. From our X-ray diffraction experiment on isothermally compressed H2O we report a coexistence of ice VII and symmetric ice X from the start of the transition pressure 40GPa to just below 100 GPa and a volume change of 4% across the transition.Vanadium, a transition metal undergoes a phase transition upon compression unlike other elements (Nb, Ta) from its group. We confirm the bcc phase transition to rhombohedral structure at 62 GPa under quasi hydrostatic compression in Ne pressure medium. Compression without pressure medium results in a much lower 30 GPa transition pressure at room temperature and 37 GPa at 425 K, pointing to a positive phase line between the bcc and rhombohedral crystalline phases. 

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