Coesite and Stishovite: Stepwise Reversal Transformations

Science  31 May 1963:
Vol. 140, Issue 3570, pp. 991-993
DOI: 10.1126/science.140.3570.991


Very marked differences in the metastable persistence of coesite and stishovite have been demonstrated; the former possibly persists indefinitely below 1000°C at 1 atmosphere "dry," and the latter completely decomposes in minutes above 500° to 600°C to an amorphous or short range order phase. Quartz was grown (metastably) at temperatures well above its stability field from both coesite and stishovite, possibly by way of a short range order phase. The absence of stishovite in meteor-impact craters cannot be taken as evidence that it was not formed. If it has "reversed" in normal natural environments the product would almost certainly be a short range order phase or derivative.