Synthesis and crystal chemistry of lanthanide allanites

TR Number
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Virginia Tech

Metamictization and complex chemistry are major obstacles to the crystal chemical characterization of natural allanites. To overcome these problems, allanites, Ca(REE)Fe²+Al₂Si₃O₁₂(OH), where REE = La, La-Ce, Ce, Nd, Sm, Eu, Gd, Er, Dy, Yb and Y have been synthesized hydrothermally from unbuffered and buffered oxide mixes at 500 to 650°C, 5.5 kbar (550 MPa), and 700 to 725°C, 4 kbar (400 MPa). Although allanite is readily synthesized, high yields are obtained only for allanite-(LREE) compositions, and end"member composition is obtained only for allanite-(La). Er and Yb ions are too small to substitute at the A(2) site in allanite, but a small amount can substitute at the VI~coordinated M(3) site. Fe²+ in the M(3) site favors LREE substitution, which supports the contention that allanite is Ce'selective.