Control and monitoring of oxygen fugacity in piston cylinder experiments

Vladimir Matjuschkin*, Richard A. Brooker, Brian Tattitch, Jon D. Blundy, Charlotte C. Stamper

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


We present a newly developed capsule design that resolves some common problems associated with the monitoring and control of oxygen fugacity (fO2) in high-pressure piston cylinder experiments. The new fO2 control assembly consists of an AuPd outer capsule enclosing two inner capsules: one of AuPd capsule containing the experimental charge (including some water), and the other of Pt containing a solid oxygen buffer plus water. The inner capsules are separated by crushable alumina. The outer capsule is surrounded by a Pyrex sleeve to simultaneously minimise hydrogen loss from the cell and carbon infiltration from the graphite furnace. Controlled fO2 experiments using this cell design were carried out at 1.0 GPa and 1,000 °C. We used NiPd, CoPd and (Ni, Mg)O fO2 sensors, whose pressure sensitivity is well calibrated, to monitor the redox states achieved in experiments buffered by Re–ReO2, Ni–NiO and Co–CoO, respectively. Results for the fO2 sensors are in good agreement with the intended fO2 established by the buffer, demonstrating excellent control for durations of 24–48 h, with uncertainties less than ± 0.3 log bar units of fO2.

Original languageEnglish
JournalContributions to Mineralogy and Petrology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Capsule design
  • Hydrogen permeability
  • Oxygen fugacity
  • Piston cylinder experiments
  • Water activity


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