Dissolution Process of Phlogopite in Acid Solutions

Yoshihiro Kuwahara and Yoshikazu Aoki
Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Faculty of Science Kyushu University, Fukuoka 812, Japan

Abstract: The alteration experiments of phlogopite with 0.01 N HCl solution containing 0.1 M NaCl at 50°, 80° and 120°C have been carried out to aid in the understanding of the dissolution process of mica and the formation of secondary phases such as vermiculite and interstratified mica/vermiculite. Twenty milligrams of phlogopite samples were suspended in 20 ml or 100 ml of leaching solution.

In these experiments, the dissolution ofphlogopite occurred incongruently, where the preferential release of K occurred in almost all stages of the alteration reaction. In the 100 ml experiments, the priority in dissolution in the initial stage was in the order; K > Fe > Mg, Al > Si. This supports that phlogopite leaching is controlled by the mineral structure. At 80° and 50°C in the 20 ml experiments, the release of all elements except for K was nearly congruent. At 120°C in the 20 ml experiments, the dissolution was outwardly incongruent, which Fe decreased remarkably after six days and Al was released most slowly compared with all other elements in phlogopite. This is probably due to the precipitation of secondary phases such as aluminum and iron oxides and/or hydroxides.

Vermiculite and R1-type interstratified mica/vermiculite, containing 70 ∼ 50% mica, were formed in the alteration process of phlogopite. The following two processes were confirmed for the formation of interstratified structure: Interstratified structure was formed (1) directly from phlogopite or (2) from vermiculite which was produced earlier from phlogopite by regaining of K from the ambient solution. It may depend on the release rate of K from phlogopite whether mica-vermiculite layer sequences develop or vermiculite-vermiculite sequences do.

Key Words: Alteration • Biotite • Dissolution • Interstratification • Leached layer • Mica/vermiculite • Phlogopite • Transmission electron microscopy • Vermiculite

Clays and Clay Minerals; February 1995 v. 43; no. 1; p. 39-50; DOI: 10.1346/CCMN.1995.0430105
© 1995, The Clay Minerals Society
Clay Minerals Society (www.clays.org)