Ramp compression of iron to 273 GPa

Jue Wang, Raymond F. Smith, Jon H. Eggert, Dave G. Braun, Thomas R. Boehly, J. Reed Patterson, Peter M. Celliers, Raymond Jeanloz, Gilbert W. Collins, Thomas S. Duffy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Multiple thickness Fe foils were ramp compressed over several nanoseconds to pressure conditions relevant to the Earth's core. Using wave-profile analysis, the sound speed and the stress-density response were determined to a peak longitudinal stress of 273 GPa. The measured stress-density states lie between shock compression and 300-K static data, and are consistent with relatively low temperatures being achieved in these experiments. Phase transitions generally display time-dependent material response and generate a growing shock. We demonstrate for the first time that a low-pressure phase transformation (α-Fe to ε-Fe) can be overdriven by an initial steady shock to avoid both the time-dependent response and the growing shock that has previously limited ramp-wave-loading experiments. In addition, the initial steady shock pre-compresses the Fe and allows different thermodynamic compression paths to be explored.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number023513
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 14 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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