The discovery of the exciting… The “heavenly” diamond stone reached Earth by a meteorite

In a recent study, researchers confirmed the existence of so-called “heavenly diamonds” after they were found at the Earth’s surface, following long-standing discussions about the truth of the stone also called “Lonsdalite”, according to CNN.
In this context, the natural chemical process by which scientists believe that the Lonsdalite stone was formed could inspire a way to manufacture ultra-durable industrial components, according to the authors of the study published on September 12, 2022, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, known for its acronym. “PNAS”.
The Lonsdalite stone has a hardness and strength that exceeds those of ordinary diamonds, and this rare mineral arrived here by a meteorite, according to the study.
The discovery began when geologist Andy Tomkins, a professor at Monash University in Australia, was abroad in the field of classification of meteorites. Study co-author Alan Salk, a PhD student and researcher at the Royal Institute of Technology in Melbourne, said he had found a strange type of diamond “bent” in a space rock in northwest Africa.
Salk added that Tomkins theorized that the meteorite carrying Lonsdalite came from the mantle of a dwarf planet that existed about 4.5 billion years ago.
With advanced methods and future possibilities, the discovery is exciting, said Paul Acemo, professor of geology and geochemistry at Caltech (he was not involved in the study).
The team was able to analyze the meteorite with the help of electron microscopy and advanced synchrotron techniques, which made maps of the components of the space body, including londesalite, diamond and graphite, according to the study.
Diamonds and Lonsdalites can be formed in three ways; Either during high pressure and temperature over a long period of time, which is what diamonds look like on the surface of the Earth, or the impact of a meteorite impact at high speed, or the release of vapors of fractured graphite that would attach to a small piece of diamond and build on it, he says. Asimo.
He added that the way the mineral is formed can affect its size. While the researchers in this study suggested that the third method constituted the largest sample they found, pointing out that finding the largest sample of Lonsdalite is not just an anomaly from other diamonds.
On the other hand, Salk said that regular diamonds, like the diamonds you see in fine jewelry, are made of carbon and have a cubic atomic structure. He added that Lonsdalite is also made of carbon, but has an unusual hexagonal structure instead.
Salk also noted that researchers have come up with models for the structure of Lonsdalite before, and they have theorized that the hexagonal structure can make it 58% harder than ordinary diamonds.
This hardness could make rare space diamonds a valuable resource for industrial applications if scientists can find a way to use the new production method to produce large enough minerals.
It is noteworthy that scientists discussed the existence of Lonsdalite long before this discovery, as scientists first identified parts of the mineral in 1967, but they were minute – about 1 to 2 nanometers, which is a thousand times smaller than what was found in the latest discovery, he said. passable.
Now that scientists know about this mineral, the discovery raises the question of whether they can replicate it.

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