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Published December 1986 | Published
Journal Article Open

Measurement of water in rhyolitic glasses; calibration of an infrared spectroscopic technique


A series of natural rhyolitic obsidians were analyzed for their total water contents by a vacuum extraction technique. The grain size of the crushed samples can significantly affect these analyses. Coarse powders must be used in order to avoid surface-correlated water. These analyses were used to calibrate infrared spectroscopic measurements of water in glass using several infrared and near-infrared absorption bands. We demonstrate that infrared spectroscopy can yield precise determinations of not only total dissolved water contents, but also the concentrations of individual H-bearing species in natural and synthetic rhyolitic glasses on spots as small as a few tens of micrometers in diameter.

Additional Information

© 1986 by the Mineralogical Society of America. Manuscript received December 24, 1985; Manuscript accepted July 8, 1986. The authors thank the following people for providing samples: A. T. Anderson, Jr., University of Chicago; I. S. E. Carmichael, University of California, Berkeley; T. Grove, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; K. Lapham, Arizona State University; H. Westrich, Sandia Laboratories; and M. Bursik and K. Sieh, California Institute of Technology. This study was supported by grant numbers EAR 83-3086 and EAR 84-17434 from the National Science Foundation and by DE-FG03-85ER13445 from the Department of Energy. This is contribution 4284 of the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology.

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