Ringwoodite is a high-pressure phase of Mg2SiO4 (magnesium silicate) formed at high temperatures and pressures of the Earth's mantle between 525 and 660 km (326 and 410 mi) depth. It may also contain iron and hydrogen. It is polymorphous with the olivine phase forsterite silicate).
Ringwoodite is notable for being able to contain hydroxide ions (oxygen and hydrogen atoms bound together) within its structure. In this case two hydroxide ions usually take the place of a magnesium ion and two oxide ions.
Combined with evidence of its occurrence deep in the Earth's mantle, this suggests that there is from one to three times the world ocean 's equivalent of water in the mantle transition zone
This mineral was first identified in the Tenham meteorite in 1969, and is inferred to be present in large quantities in the Earth’s mantle.
Ringwoodite was named after the Australian earth scientist (1930–1993), who studied polymorphic phase transitions in the common mantle minerals olivine and pyroxene at pressures equivalent to depths as great as about 600 km.
Olivine , and ringwoodite are polymorphs found in the upper mantle of the earth. At depths greater than about 660 km, other minerals, including some with the perovskite structure , are stable. The properties of these minerals determine many of the properties of the mantle.