Diamonds, diamonds everywhere in the universe! Yes, it’s raining diamonds in space
Research has revealed that it could be raining diamonds on planets across the universe. Check the details here.
What comes to mind with the word “diamonds”? A gem, a diamond jewel, one of the hardest objects there is or something else? What if we told you that it could rain diamonds on the planets of the universe? Scientists have suggested it could be raining diamonds on planets across the universe after using common plastic to recreate the strange precipitation believed to form deep within Uranus and Neptune.
According to an AFP report, scientists had previously hypothesized that extremely high pressure and temperatures transformed hydrogen and carbon into solid diamonds thousands of kilometers below the surface of the ice giants. Now new research, published in Science Advances, has inserted oxygen into the mix, finding that ‘diamond rain’ may be more common than previously thought.
Ice giants like Neptune and Uranus are thought to be the most common planet shape outside our solar system, meaning diamond showers could occur in the universe. “The extreme conditions inside ice giants such as Uranus and Neptune can lead to peculiar chemical and structural transitions, for example the precipitation of diamonds or superionic water, as observed so far experimentally only for systems Pure C─H and H2O, respectively”, Science Advances said in a report.
Informing about the experiment, the report says the researchers investigated a stoichiometric mixture of C and H2O by impact compressing polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastics and performing in situ X-ray probing. Researchers observe the formation of diamonds at pressures between 72 ± 7 and 125 ± 13 GPa at temperatures ranging from ~3500 to ~6000 K. By combining X-ray diffraction and small-angle X-ray scattering, they have accessed the kinetics of this reaction.
“The observed demixing of C and H2O suggests that the precipitation of diamonds inside ice giants is enhanced by oxygen, which may lead to the isolation of water and thus the formation of relevant superionic structures. for planetary magnetic fields. Additionally, our measurements indicate a means of producing nanodiamonds by simple laser shock compression of inexpensive PET plastics,” the report adds.