A swelling hematite/layer-silicate complex in weathered granite

M. J. Wilson, J. D. Russell, J. M. Tait, D. R. Clark, A. R. Fraser, I. Stephen
1981 Clay minerals  
A naturally occurring hematitic iron oxide/layer-silicate complex has been found in red mottled patches of a deeply weathered granite in north-east Scotland. X-ray diffraction shows a basal spacing of 36 Å—also observable by high resolution electron microscopy—which expands to 40 Å with glycerol and contracts to 33·5 Å on heating. Selected area electron diffraction reveals a composite hematite/layer-silicate pattern with the a-axis of hematite parallel to the b-axis of the silicate. The IR
more » ... licate. The IR spectrum of the complex clearly shows the contribution made by each of the components. The silicate, with bands due to OH stretching at 3602 cm−1, OH deformation at 855 cm−1, and Si-O stretching at 1085, 1035, 540 and 471 cm−1 resembles ferruginous pyrophyllite, while the hematite, with a perpendicular band at 647 cm−1, in-plane bands at 519, 438, 400, 302 and 227 cm−1 and a characteristic pattern of relative band intensities, is similar to a platy form of soil hematite. Electron microprobe analysis of individual particles gives the complex an (Fe + Al): Si ratio of 6:1, which is consistent with a structure made up of twelve octahedral sheets terminated on both sides by a silicate sheet. It seems likely that the complex developed from a siliceous ferrihydrite which became progressively more organized with geological time.
doi:10.1180/claymin.1981.016.3.04 fatcat:dxh43mk5pjerdliyyhmvmvs6sm