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Earth core SIGNED

Exploring Thermodynamic Properties of Earth’s Core-Forming Materials

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "Earth core" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: EH8 9YL

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country United Kingdom [UK]
 Total cost 1˙891˙765 €
 EC max contribution 1˙891˙765 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2014-CoG
 Funding Scheme ERC-COG
 Starting year 2015
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2015-06-01   to  2021-05-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    THE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH UK (EDINBURGH) coordinator 1˙891˙765.00


 Project objective

It is known that the Earth’s core is less dense than pure iron by about 7%, which is due to the presence of a light element(s) such as Si, S, C, O, and H. The goal of this project is to construct a thermodynamic model of the Earth’s central core. A particular focus is on the identification of the light element because the inclusion of these elements in iron liquid depends on the pressure (P), temperature (T), and chemical environment and hence provides us invaluable information about the origin and evolution of the solid Earth. We will examine phase relations and density of phases in Fe-light element systems by conducting high-P-T experiments and employing thermodynamic calculations based on the experimental data. High-P-T experiments will be conducted in a diamond anvil cell with three different kinds of heating techniques: laser heating, external-resistive heating, and internal-resistive heating. Of the three, the internal-resistive heating system is a special technique that I have developed and employed and I am currently generating 5000 K at 200 GPa with it. Structure of phases will be analysed by in-situ X-ray diffraction. Chemical analysis will also be employed on samples to determine element partitioning between the phases. I will also employ thermodynamic calculations based on the experimental data to fully understand the thermodynamic properties of the materials and obtain physical properties which are difficult to directly determine by experiment such as sound velocity of liquids. From the thermodynamic models, I will calculate the physical properties of light element-bearing iron liquids and compare them with seismologically constrained values of the Earth’s core to find out the best matching composition. From these results, I will discuss the physical and chemical environments during the core formation and implicate in the origin and evolution of the Earth. Also the results will be applied to other terrestrial planets which have metallic cores.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2020 Samuel Thompson, Tetsuya Komabayashi, Helene Breton, Sho Suehiro, Konstantin Glazyrin, Anna Pakhomova, Yasuo Ohishi
Compression experiments to 126 GPa and 2500 K and thermal equation of state of Fe3S: Implications for sulphur in the Earth\'s core
published pages: 116080, ISSN: 0012-821X, DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2020.116080
Earth and Planetary Science Letters 534 2020-02-06
2019 Helene Breton, Tetsuya Komabayashi, Samuel Thompson, Nicola Potts, Christopher McGuire, Sho Suehiro, Simone Anzellini, Yasuo Ohishi
Static compression of Fe4N to 77 GPa and its implications for nitrogen storage in the deep Earth
published pages: 1781-1787, ISSN: 0003-004X, DOI: 10.2138/am-2019-7065
American Mineralogist 104/12 2020-01-24
2019 Shigehiko Tateno, Tetsuya Komabayashi, Kei Hirose, Naohisa Hirao, Yasuo Ohishi
Static compression of B2 KCl to 230 GPa and its P-V-T equation of state
published pages: 718-723, ISSN: 0003-004X, DOI: 10.2138/am-2019-6779
American Mineralogist 104/5 2020-01-24
2017 Saori I. Kawaguchi, Yoichi Nakajima, Kei Hirose, Tetsuya Komabayashi, Haruka Ozawa, Shigehiko Tateno, Yasuhiro Kuwayama, Satoshi Tsutsui, Alfred Q. R. Baron
Sound velocity of liquid Fe-Ni-S at high pressure
published pages: 3624-3634, ISSN: 2169-9313, DOI: 10.1002/2016jb013609
Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth 122/5 2020-01-24
2019 Tetsuya Komabayashi, Giacomo Pesce, Ryosuke Sinmyo, Takaaki Kawazoe, Helene Breton, Yuta Shimoyama, Konstantin Glazyrin, Zuzana Konôpková, Mohamed Mezouar
Phase relations in the system Fe–Ni–Si to 200 GPa and 3900 K and implications for Earth\'s core
published pages: 83-88, ISSN: 0012-821X, DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2019.01.056
Earth and Planetary Science Letters 512 2020-01-24
2019 Tetsuya Komabayashi, Giacomo Pesce, Guillaume Morard, Daniele Antonangeli, Ryosuke Sinmyo, Mohamed Mezouar
Phase transition boundary between fcc and hcp structures in Fe-Si alloy and its implications for terrestrial planetary cores
published pages: 94-99, ISSN: 0003-004X, DOI: 10.2138/am-2019-6636
American Mineralogist 104/1 2020-01-24

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