Oxygen isotope exchange kinetics between CAI melt and carbon monoxide gas: Implication for CAI formation in the earliest Solar System

Daiki Yamamoto, Noriyuki Kawasaki, Shogo Tachibana, Michiru Kamibayashi, Hisayoshi Yurimoto

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2 Citations (Scopus)


Coarse-grained igneous calcium-aluminum-rich inclusions (CAIs) are suggested to have experienced gas–melt isotope exchange of oxygen during the melting events of their precursors. Therefore, their oxygen isotope variation would preserve information about the high-temperature processes in the earliest Solar System. We experimentally determined oxygen isotope exchange kinetics between CAI analog melt and carbon monoxide (CO) gas at 1420 °C and 1460 °C under CO gas partial pressures of 0.1, 0.5, and 1 Pa to understand the role of CO gas on the oxygen isotope exchange. We observed oxygen isotope zoning profiles inside the reacted samples that formed through the oxygen isotope exchange reaction at the melt surface and oxygen diffusion in the melt. The zoning profiles were fitted using a three-dimensional spherical diffusion model with time-dependent surface concentration. The oxygen isotope exchange efficiency for colliding CO molecules is estimated to be ∼3.3 × 10–4, which is much smaller than that for H2O (0.28). The oxygen diffusion coefficient obtained in this study is similar to that obtained in the oxygen isotope exchange experiments between the CAI melt and H2O, suggesting that the diffusion species in the melt is O2–, despite the surrounding atmospheres. A comparison of the isotope exchange reaction kinetics between (1) CAI melt and CO gas, (2) CAI melt and H2O gas, and (3) CO and H2O gases shows that the reaction rate decreases in the order of (3), (2), and (1). The rapid isotope exchange of the reaction (1) indicates that the oxygen isotopic compositions of H2O and CO should have been equilibrated during the melting and crystallization processes of igneous CAIs. Both H2O and CO change the oxygen isotope compositions of molten CAI in the same direction, although reaction (2) controls the isotope exchange timescale between the CAI melt and surrounding gas. Our dataset demonstrates that type B CAIs having melilite with homogeneous oxygen isotope composition should have been heated for 2–3 days at PH2 > 100 Pa above the melilite liquidus (∼1400 °C) in the solar protoplanetary disk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)104-112
Number of pages9
JournalGeochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2022
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geochemistry and Petrology


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