Prof. Dr. Maria del Carmen Sanchez Valle

Prof. Dr. Maria del Carmen Sanchez Valle

Corrensstr. 24, room 126
48149 Münster

T: +49 251 83-33415

  • Research Areas

    Fluid-rock interactions & mass transfer in subduction zones

    The goal of my research is to understand the complex dynamic processes occurring in the Earth's and planetary interiors through direct investigations of the physical and chemical properties of geomaterials (solids, melts and fluids) at relevant pressure and temperature conditions. My research covers a broad range of topics in the areas of Mineral Physics, Experimental (fluid) Geochemistry and Planetology.In my group, we recreate the processes operating within planetary interior using high pressure apparatus (namely diamond anvil cells DAC) and probe the physical and chemical properties of materials using in situ state-of the art laser and synchrotron-based X-ray techniques. These experimental studies provide the necessary information for developing predictive models to understand the internal functioning of planets and the link with surface manifestations of this activity (e.g., volcanic eruptions). Main research axis: Fluid/melt properties, fluid-rock interactions and mass transfer in subduction zones; Physics of melts, magmatic processes and the dynamics of volcanic eruptions; Water in the Earth's interior; Fate of subducted slabs and chemical heterogeneities in the mantle; Planetology; icy moons (experimental and numerical studies)

    Physics of melts & magmatic processes

    Water in the Earth’s interior

    Fate of subducted slabs; Planetology- icy moons

  • CV


    Ph.D., Earth and Planetary Sciences, Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, France
    M.S., Condensed Matter (Physics), Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1, France
    B.S., Physics, Universidad de Valladolid, Spain


    Professor for Mineralogy, WWU Münster, Germany
    Visiting scientist ETH Zürich, Switzerland
    Assistant Professor for Experimental Geochemistry & Mineral Physics, ETH Zürich, Switzerland
    Post-doctoral researcher, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), USA
    Teaching assistant, University Claude Bernard Lyon 1, Lyon, France
    Doctoral Fellow, Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, France

    External Functions

    Specialty Chief Editor Frontiers in Earth Science Earth and Planetary Materials
    Review panel PRC3 (Matter and material properties) at synchrotron Soleil, France
    Associate Editor in Frontiers in Earth Sciences
    Guest editor in Chemical Geology
    XAS review panel at synchrotron Swiss Light Source (SLS), Switzerland
  • Projects

    • Experimental studies of H20-CH4 ices in mini-Neptune exoplanets at EuXFEL ()
      Individual Granted Project: The Deutsche Elektronen-Synchrotron - A Research Centre of the Helmholtz Association
    • SP9 DiaStem – FOR 2440: Matter Under Planetary Interior Conditions - High pressure, Planetary, and Plasma Physics - SP 9: Experimental study of planetary ices at high pressure using dynamically-driven diamond anvil cells ()
      Subproject in DFG-Joint Project Hosted outside the University of Münster: DFG - Research Unit | Project Number: SA 2585/5-1
    • MoVEMENT – Mobility of Volatiles in the Earth’s Mantle by Experimental and Numerical Technics ()
      EU-Project Hosted at University the of Münster: EC H2020 - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions - Individual Fellowship | Project Number: 842339
    • Phase transitions, Microstructures and their seismic signals from the Earth's mantle ()
      Individual Granted Project: DFG - Individual Grants Programme | Project Number: TH 1530/18-1; SA 2585/3-1
    • DAAD Austauschprogramm: PPP Frankreich - Deformation in the deep Earth: A combined mineral physics and seismology study ()
      Individual Granted Project: German Academic Exchange Service | Project Number: 57390184
    • Mobility of carbon-rich melts in the upper mantle: a combined experimental and theoretical study of carbonatite melts densities ()
      Individual Granted Project: DFG - Individual Grants Programme | Project Number: SA 2585/4-1
  • Publications

    • Tiraboschi C, McCammon C, Rohrbach A, Klemme S, Berndt J & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Preferential mobilisation of oxidised iron by slab-derived hydrous silicate melts. Geochemical Perspectives Letters, 24, 43–47. doi: 10.7185/geochemlet.2304.
    • Steeger Paul, Graalmann Jan-Hauke, Schmidt Robert, Kupenko Ilya, Sanchez-Valle Carmen, Marauhn Philipp, Deilmann Thorsten, de Vasconcellos Steffen Michaelis, Rohlfing Michael, Bratschitsch Rudolf. (). Pressure Dependence of Intra- and Interlayer Excitons in 2H-MoS2 Bilayers. Nano Letters, 23(19). doi: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.3c02428.

    Research Articles (Journals)
    • Krug M, Saki M, Ledoux E, Gay JP, Chantel J, Pakhomova A, Husband R, Rohrbach A, Klemme S, Thomas C, Merkel S & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Textures induced by the coesite-stishovite transition and implications for the visibility of the X-discontinuity. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 23(10), e2022GC010544. doi:
    Research Articles in Edited Proceedings (Conferences)
    • Tiraboschi C, Rohrbach A, Klemme S, Berndt J & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Iron mobility in slab-derived hydrous silicate melts at sub-arc conditions. In EGU 2022, Vienna. [online first]

    • Ritter, X., Guillot, B., Sator, N., Desmaele, E., Massuyeau, M., and Sanchez-Valle, C. (). Non-Arrhenian temperature-dependent viscosity of alkali(ne) carbonate melts at mantle pressures. Frontiers in Earth Science, 9. doi: 10.3389/feart.2021.674770.
    • Mergner, V. Kupenko, I., Spiekermann, G. , S., Libon, L., Chariton, S., Krug, M., Steinbrügge, R. Sergueev, I., and Sanchez-Valle, C. (). Sound Velocities in FeSi at Lower Mantle Conditions and the Origin of Ultralow-Velocity Zones. Geophysical Research Letters, 48. doi: 10.1029/2020GL092257.

    • Ferré, E.C., Kupenko, I., Martín- Hernández, F., Ravat, D., and Sanchez- Valle, C. (). Magnetic sources in the Earth’s mantle. Nature Rev. Earth & Env., 1. doi: 10.1038/s43017-020-00107-x.
    • Xenia Ritter, Carmen Sanchez-Valle, Nicolas Sator , Elsa Desmaele, Nicolas Guignot, Andrew King, Ilya Kupenko, Jasper Berndt, Bertrand Guillot. (). Density of hydrous carbonate melts under pressure, compressibility of volatiles and implications for carbonate melt mobility in the upper mantle. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 533. doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2019.116043.
    • Louvel, M, Sanchez-Valle, C, Malfait, WJ, Pokrovski, GS, Borca, CN, Grolimund, D,. (). Bromine speciation and partitioning in slab-derived aqueous fluids and silicate melts and implications for halogen transfer in subduction zones. SOLID EARTH, 11, 1145–1161. doi: 10.5194/se-11-1145-2020.

    Research Articles (Journals)
    • Sanchez-Valle C, Wang J & Rohrbach A. (). Effect of calcium on the elasticity of majoritic garnets and the seismic gradients in the mantle transition zone. Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, 293.
    • I. Kupenko, G. Aprilis, D. M. Vasiukov, C. McCammon, S. Chariton, V. Cerantola, I. Kantor, A. I. Chumakov, R. Rüffer, L. Dubrovinsky & C. Sanchez-Valle. (). Magnetism in cold subducting slabs at mantle transition zone depths. Nature, 570, 102–106. doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1254-8.
    Abstracts in Digital Collections (Conferences)
    • Ritter X, Sanchez-Valle C, King A, Guignot N, Sator N, Guillot B, Laumonier M, Perrillat J-P, Kupenko I, Sifré D, Gaillard F & Krolow M. (). Carbonate melt mobility in the upper mantle. In Deep Carbon 2019, Washington D.C..
    • Ritter X & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Mobility of carbonate melts in the upper mantle. In Goldschmidt 2019, Barcelona.

    • Ritter X, Sanchez-Valle C, Laumonier M, King A, Guignot N, Perrillat J-P, Gaillard F & Sifré D. (). Rapid carbonate melt extraction from the subducting slab. In EMPG16 - Sixtheenth International Symposium on Experimental Mineralogy, Petrology and Geochemistry, Clermont-Ferrand.

    Research Articles (Journals)
    • Zezin, D., Driener, T., and Sanchez-Valle, C. (). Volumetric Properties of Na2SO4 –H2O and Na2SO4 –NaCl-H2O Solutions to 523.15 K, 70 MPa. J. Chem. Eng. Data, 62. doi: 10.1021/acs.jced.7b00655.
    • Tsay, A., Zajacz, Z., Ulmer, P., and Sanchez-Valle, C. (). Mobility of major and trace elements in the eclogite-fluid system and element fluxes upon slab dehydration. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 198, 70–91. doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2016.10.038. [accepted / in Press (not yet published)]
    Abstracts in Digital Collections (Conferences)
    • Ritter X, Sanchez-Valle C, Laumonier M, King A, Guignot N, Perrillat J-P, Gaillard F & Sifré D. (). Density of alkali carbonate melts in the upper mantle and implications for the mobility of carbon at depth. In AGU Fall Meeting, New Orleans, LA.
    • Kupenko I, Merkel S, Achorner M, Plückthun C, Liermann H & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Plastic deformation of FeSi at high pressures: implications for planetary cores. In EGU General Assembly 2017, Vienna.

    • A new experimental approach to study fluid-rock equilibria at the slab-mantle interface based on the synthetic fluid inclusion technique. (). Tsay, A., Zajacz, Z., Ulmer, P., Walle, M., and Sanchez-Valle, C. American Mineralogist, 101, 2199–2209. doi: 10.2138/am-2016-5621.

    Research Articles (Journals)
    • Sanchez-Valle, C., Gaillard, F., Ghosh, S., and Mezger, K. (). Fluids and melts in planetary interiors: from crust to core-mantle boundaries. Chemical Geology, 418, 1–5. doi: 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2015.11.0120009-2541.
    • Zezin D., Driesner T. & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Volumetric properties of Na2SO4-H2O and Na2SO4-NaCl-H2O solutions to 523.15 K, 70 MPa. Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data, 60(4), 1181–1192. doi: 10.1021/je501152a.
    • Rosa A., Sanchez-Valle C., Wang J. & Saikia A. (). Elasticity of superhydrous phase B, seismic anomalies in cold slabs and implications for deep water transport. Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, 243(null), 30–43. doi: 10.1016/j.pepi.2015.03.009.
    Books (Edited Collections)
    • Sanchez-Valle, C., Gaillard, Fr., Ghosh, S., and Mezger, K. (Eds.). (). Fluids and melts in planetary interiors: from crust to core-mantle boundaries. Amsterdam: Elsevier.

    • Ardia P, Di Muro A, Giordano D, Massare D, Sanchez-Valle C & Schmidt MW. (). Densification mechanisms of haplogranite glasses as a function of water content and pressure based on density and Raman data. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 138, 180. doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2014.03.022.
    • Malfait WJ, Seifert R, Petitgirard S, Perrillat JP, Mézouar M, Ota T, Nakamura E, Lerch P & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Supervolcano eruptions driven by melt buoyancy in large silicic magma chambers. Nature Geoscience, 7(2), 125. doi: 10.1038/ngeo2042.
    • Malfait WJ, Seifert R & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Densified glasses as structural proxies for high-pressure melts: Configurational compressibility of silicate melts retained in quenched and decompressed glasses. American Mineralogist, 99(10), 2145. doi: 10.2138/am-2014-5019.
    • Yao C, Deschamps F, Lowman J, Sanchez-Valle C, Tackley P. . (). Stagnant-lid convection in 3D-spherical bottom heated shells: influence of curvature and implications for icy moons. . Journal of Geophysical Research (Planets), 119, 1895–1913.
    • Louvel M, Sanchez-Valle C, Malfait WJ, Cardon H, Testemale D & Hazemann JL. (). Constraints on the mobilization of Zr in magmatic-hydrothermal processes in subduction zones from in situ fluid-melt partitioning experiments. American Mineralogist, 99(8-9), 1625. doi: 10.2138/am.2014.4799.
    • Tsay A, Zajacz Z & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Efficient mobilization and fractionation of REE by aqueous fluids upon slab dehydration. . Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 398, 101–112.
    • Malfait WJ, Seifert R, Petitgirard S, Mezouar M, Sanchez-Valle C. . (). The density of andesite melts and the compressibility of dissolved water in silicate melts at upper mantle conditions. . Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 393, 31–38.
    • Zezin D, Driesner T, Scott S, Sanchez-Valle C, Wagner T. . (). Volumetric Properties of Mixed Electrolyte Aqueous Solutions at Elevated Temperatures and Pressures. The Systems CaCl2-NaCl-H2O and MgCl2-NaCl-H2O to 523.15 K, 70 MPa, and Ionic Strength from 0.1 to 18 mol∙kg-1. . Journal of Chemical Engineering Data, 59, 2570–2588.
    • Zezin DY, Driesner T, Sanchez-Valle C. . (). Volumetric properties of mixed electrolyte aqueous solutions at elevated temperatures and pressures. The System KCl-NaCl-H2O to 250 °C, 40 MPa, and ionic strength from 0.1 to 5.8 m. Journal of Chemical Engineering Data, 59(3), 736–749,–749.

    Research Articles (Journals)
    • Seifert R, Malfait WJ, Lerch P & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Partial molar volume and compressibility of dissolved CO2 in glasses with magmatic compositions. Chemical Geology, 358, 130. doi: 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2013.09.007.
    • Rosa AD, Sanchez-Valle C, Nisr C, Evans SR, Debord R & Merkel S. (). Shear wave anisotropy in textured phase D and constraints on deep water recycling in subduction zones. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 377-378, 22. doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2013.06.036.
    • Zajacz Z, Candela PA, Piccoli PM, Sanchez-Valle C & Wälle M. (). Solubility and partitioning behavior of Au, Cu, Ag and reduced S in magmas. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 112, 304. doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2013.02.026.
    • Malfait WJ & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Effect of water and network connectivity on glass elasticity and melt fragility. Chemical Geology, 346, 80. doi: 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2012.04.034.
    • Sanchez-Valle C, Mantegazzi D, Bass JD & Reusser E. (). Equation of state, refractive index and polarizability of compressed water to 7 GPa and 673 K. Journal of Chemical Physics, 138(5). doi: 10.1063/1.4789359.
    • Rosa AD, Mezouar M, Gabarino G, Bouvier P, Ghosh S, Rorhbach A, Sanchez-Valle C. . (). Single-crystal equation of state of phase D to lower mantle pressures and the effect of hydration on the buoyancy of subducting slabs. . Journal of Geophysical Research (Solid Earth), 118, 6124–6133.
    • Seifert R, Malfait JW, Petitgirard S & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Density of phonolite liquids and time scales of crystal fractionation in magma chambers. . Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 381, 12–20.
    • Mantegazzi D, Sanchez-Valle C, Driesner T. . (). Thermodynamic properties of aqueous NaCl solutions to 1073 K and 4.5 GPa, and implications for dehydration reactions in subducting slabs. . Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 121, 263–290.
    • Louvel M, Sanchez-Valle C, Malfait WJ, Testemale D & Hazemann J-L. (). Zr complexation in high pressure aqueous fluids and silicate melts and implications for HFSE mobilization in subduction zones. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 104, 281–299.
    • Louvel M, Sanchez-Valle C, Malfait W.J & Testemale D and Hazemann J-L. (). Zr complexation in high pressure fluids and silicate melts and implications for the mobilization of HFSE in subduction zones. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 104, 281–299. doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2012.11.001.
    Research Article (Book Contributions)
    • Sanchez-Valle C . (). Structure and Thermodynamics of Subduction Zone Fluids from Spectroscopic Studies. . In Stefansson A, Driesner T, Benezeth P (Eds.), Thermodynamics of Geothermal Fluids (pp. 265–309). MSA.

    • Mantegazzi D, Sanchez-Valle C, Reusser E & Driesner T. (). Thermodynamic properties of aqueous sodium sulfate solutions to 773 K and 3 GPa derived from acoustic velocity measurements in the diamond anvil cell. Journal of Chemical Physics, 137(22). doi: 10.1063/1.4769265.
    • Deschamps F, Yao C, Tackley PJ & Sanchez-Valle C. (). High Rayleigh number thermal convection in volumetrically heated spherical shells. Journal of Geophysical Research, 117(9). doi: 10.1029/2012JE004090.
    • Zajacz Z, Candela PA, Piccoli PM, Wälle M & Sanchez-Valle C. (). Gold and copper in volatile saturated mafic to intermediate magmas: Solubilities, partitioning, and implications for ore deposit formation. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 91, 159. doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2012.05.033.
    • Zajacz Z, Candela PA., Piccoli PM & Sanchez-Valle C. (). The partitioning of sulfur and chlorine between andesite melts and magmatic volatiles and the exchange coefficients of major cations. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 89, 101. doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2012.04.039.
    • Rosa AD, Sanchez-Valle C & Ghosh S. (). Elasticity of phase D and implication for the degree of hydration of deep subducted slabs. Geophysical Research Letters, 39(6). doi: 10.1029/2012GL050927.
    • Malfait WJ, Verel R, Ardia P, Sanchez-Valle C. . (). Aluminum coordination in hydrous rhyolite and andesite glasses and melts: effects of temperature, pressure, composition and water content. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 77, 11–26.

    • Sanchez-Valle C, Ghosh S & Rosa AD. (). Sound velocities of ferromagnesian carbonates and the seismic detection of carbonates in eclogites and the mantle. Geophysical Research Letters, 38(24). doi: 10.1029/2011GL049981.
    • Malfait WJ, Sanchez-Valle C, Ardia P, Médard E & Lerch P. (). Compositional dependent compressibility of dissolved water in silicate glasses. American Mineralogist, 96(8-9), 1409. doi: 10.2138/am.2011.3718.

    • Deschamps F, Mousis O, Sanchez-Valle C & Lunine JI. (). The role of methanol in the crystallization of Titan's primordial ocean. Astrophysical Journal, 724(2), 894. doi: 10.1088/0004-637X/724/2/887.
    • Sanchez-Valle C & Bass JD. (). Elasticity and pressure-induced structural changes in vitreous MgSiO3-enstatite to lower mantle pressures. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 295(3-4), 523. doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2010.04.034.
    • Bezacier L, Reynard, Bass JD, Sanchez-Valle, C & Van De Moortèle B. (). Elasticity of antigorite, seismic detection of serpentinites, and anisotropy in subduction zones. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 289(1-2), 198. doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2009.11.009.
    • Sanchez-Valle C, Chio C-H, Gatta GD . (). Elasticity of pollucite: a zeolite with potential applications to the storage of radioactive Cs. . Journal of Applied Physics, 108.

    • Gatta DG, Rotiroti N, Ballaran TB, Sanchez-Valle, C & Pavese AC. (). Elastic behavior and phase stability of pollucite, a potential host for nuclear waste. American Mineralogist, 94(8-9), 1143. doi: 10.2138/am.2009.3195.

    • Sanchez-Valle C, Sinogeikin SV, Smyth JR, Bass JD. . (). Sound velocities and single-crystal elasticity of DHMS phase A to high pressure and implications for seismic velocities and anisotropy in subducted slabs. . Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, 170, 229–239.
    • Sanchez-Valle C, Lethbrigde Z, Sinogeikin SV, Williams JJ, Walton RI, Evans KE, Bass JD. . (). Negative Poisson’s ratios in MFI-silicalite zeolites. The Journal of Chemical Physics, 128, 184503.

    • Lakshtanov DL, Sinogeikin SV, Litasov KD, Prakapenka VB, Hellwig H, Wang J, Sanches-Valle C, Perrillat JP, Chen B, Somayazulu M & Ohtani E Bass JD. (). Post-stishovite phase transition in hydrous alumina-bearing SiO2 in the lower mantle of the Earth. . Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 104, 13588–13590.

    • Sinogeikin SV, Bass JD, Prakapenka V, Lakshtanov DL, Shen G, Sanchez-Valle C, Rivers M. . (). A Brillouin spectrometer interfaced with synchrotron radiation for simultaneous x-ray density and acoustic velocity measurements. Review of Scientific Instruments, 77, 103905.
    • Sanchez-Valle C, Sinogeikin SV, Smyth JR, Bass JD. . (). Single-crystal elasticity of dense hydrous magnesium silicate phase A. American Mineralogist, 91, 961–964.

    • Sanchez-Valle C, Reynard B, Daniel I, Lécuyer C, Martínez IG & Chervin JC. (). Boron isotopic fractionation between minerals and fluids: New insights from in situ high pressure-high temperature vibrational spectroscopic data. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 69(17), 4313. doi: 10.1016/j.gca.2005.03.054.
    • Sanchez-Valle C, Sinogeikin SV, Lethbridge Z, Walton RI, Evans KE, Smith CW, Bass JD . (). Brillouin scattering study on the single-crystal elastic properties of natrolite (NAT) and analcime (ANA) zeolites. Journal of Applied Physics, 98, 53508.

    • Martínez,Isabelle G. I.G.,Sanchez-Valle,Carmen C.,Daniel,Isabelle I.,Reynard,Bruno B.,. (). High-pressure and high-temperature Raman spectroscopy of carbonate ions in aqueous solution. Chemical Geology, 207(1-2), 58. doi: 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2004.02.003.
    • Sanchez-Valle C, Daniel I, Martinez I, Simionovici A, Reynard B. . (). Progress in quantitative analyses of high P-T fluids using in situ Synchrotron X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy. . Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter, 16, S1197–S1206.

    • Sanchez-Valle,Carmen C.,Martínez,Isabelle G. I.G.,Daniel,Isabelle I.,Philippot,Pascal P.,Bohic,Sylvain S.,Simionovici,Alexandre S. A.S.,. (). Dissolution of strontianite at high P-T conditions: An in-situ synchrotron X-ray fluorescence study. American Mineralogist, 88(7), 985–985.

    • Sanchez-Valle C, Daniel I, Reynard B, Abraham R, Goutaudier C. . (). Optimisation of Sm3+ fluorescence in Sm-doped yttrium aluminum garnet: Application to pressure calibration in diamond-anvil cell. . Journal of Applied Physics, 92, 4349–4353.
  • Supervised Doctoral Studies

    Mobilization of tin in lower crustal magmatic-hydrothermal settings: In-situ investigation of fluid composition and metal complexation
    Yao, ChloeThe role of methanol on the evolution of icy bodies: experimental and numerical approaches
    Tsay, AlexandraMass transfer and recycling in subduction zones: experimental constraints on the mobility of major and trace elements upon slab dehydration
    Seifert, RitaCompressibility of volatile-bearing magmatic liquids
    Rosa, Angelika D.Elasticity and preferred orientations of ultra-high pressure hydrous phases: implications for seismic anisotropy and deep water recycling in subduction zones
    Mantegazzi, DavidePVTx properties of saline aqueous fluids at high P-T conditions from acoustic velocity measurements using Brillouin scattering spectroscopy
    Louvel, MarionTrace elements in subduction zone fluids: Speciation, partitioning and the geochemical cycle of halogens and HFSE