Al/Si Ordering In Silicate Minerals

I have a Ph.D. from the Mineral Sciences group of the Cambridge Earth Sciences Department. The topic of my research was theoretical and computational study of Al/Si ordering in aluminosilicates. I have carried out Monte Carlo simulations to explore the consequences of nearest-neighbour Al/Al avoidance, ignoring all other interactions, and to carry out fully quantitative analysis of the effect of low Al concentration on the order/disorder phase transition. The main result of these simulations is that the order-disorder transition temperature falls rapidly with decreasing Al concentration, becoming zero when the concentration falls below a critical value xc. This critical value is approximately 0.3 for the tetrahedral framework structures we have investigated. The simulations have also been used to tabulate thermodynamic properties such as the order parameter for the feldspar framework.

You can download a copy of my thesis, and more information can be found on the Mineral Sciences home page and on Martin Dove's page on Al/Si ordering in silicate minerals.