Hydration of Nebular Minerals through the Implantation-Diffusion Process

Ziliang Jin, Maitrayee Bose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Recent studies have detected structurally bound water in the refractory silicate minerals present in ordinary and enstatite chondrite meteorites. The mechanism for the incorporation of the hydrogen is not well defined. In this paper we quantitatively examine a two-fold process involving the implantation and diffusion of nebular hydrogen ions that is responsible for the hydration of the chondritic minerals. Our simulations show that depending on critical parameters, including the flux of the protons in nebular plasma, retention coefficient, temperature of the silicate minerals, and desorption rate of implanted hydrogen, the implantation of low-energy hydrogen ions can result in equivalent water contents of ∼0.1 wt% in chondritic silicates within 10 years. Thus, this novel mechanism operating in the nebula at 10-3 bar pressure and <650 K temperatures can efficiently hydrate the free-floating chondritic minerals prior to the rapid formation of planetesimals inside the snow line, and agree well with the wet accretion scenario for the inner solar system objects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number116
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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