Aqueous fluids in the Earth’s crust and mantle interact with the minerals they contact. These high temperature and pressure reactions result in the transfer of material as some elements are dissolved into the fluid, altering the original minerals, and sometimes producing new ones.
We study this process, called metasomatism, by doing mineral solubility experiments in a piston cylinder apparatus. Our experiments seek to determine how much material is lost from minerals common in the deep crust and upper mantle as they are altered by aqueous fluids at high pressures and temperatures. These data are crucial for accurately modeling the mass transfer in Earth’s interior.