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Supercomputer finds ‘super diamonds’ in space harder than Earth’s diamonds

In the market for a super diamond necklace?
  • Researchers used a supercomputer that hinted at the existence of super diamonds
  • This new material could exist on exoplanets far away
  • They believe that super diamonds can be created in a lab one day

Published on Apr 8, 2024 at 4:01PM (UTC+4)

Last updated on Apr 8, 2024 at 7:33PM (UTC+4)

Edited by Tom Wood

Diamonds are our planet’s strongest naturally occurring material, but a supercomputer hints that ‘super diamonds’ could exist in space.

Researchers have a working theory that super diamonds could be up to 30% stronger than current diamonds.

Who thought there could be something more exquisite than our good old shiny rocks?

READ MORE: Scientists discovered body of water in black hole 30 billion trillion miles away

Super diamonds could exist on certain planets far away in high-pressure environments.

The best part? Researchers from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) believe we could someday create the new stuff in a lab right here.

Just when we thought we knew everything about our planet, scientists found a solid metal ball inside the Earth’s core.

But science makes new discoveries every day.

So, what exactly are super diamonds?

Diamonds typically exist in a phase of carbon atoms tied together.

Likewise, these super diamonds, too, are eight-atom crystals.

This specific phase, called BC8, already exists in other metals like silicon and germanium.

In simpler terms, the BC8 atom phase could be replicated in a lab under high-pressure conditions.

That means scientists can create it in a lab — when they can simulate the necessary conditions.

‘Normal’ diamonds have been around for aeons now, and everyone likes to put the shiny material on their belongings, that’s why they have value.

But, it’s probably time there was something better than diamonds, right?

So, how did they come up with it?

They used Frontier — the world’s fastest supercomputer, to simulate the conditions needed to create super diamonds.

Now, that’s extremely bizarre.

The supercomputer sits at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).

That’s the same place where other researchers developed a wireless charger for EVs.

The supercomputer hinted that such high-pressure conditions could already exist in exoplanets far away.

That means super diamonds could be a naturally-occurring material on other planets.

We already have advanced tools like the James Webb Telescope looking at planets light years away.

Creating super diamonds in a lab here on Earth is relatively easier.

“Despite numerous efforts to synthesize this elusive carbon crystalline phase, including previous National Ignition Facility (NIF) campaigns, it has yet to be observed,” LLNL researcher Marius Millot mentioned.

He added, “But we believe it may exist in carbon-rich exoplanets.”

It’s safe to say that there’s probably a planet out there that has the correct high-pressure environment required to create new stuff.

Getting to that planet would take us years, and who knows if we’ll ever even find a planet like that?

So, maybe we’re better channeling our energies down here?

Some of the images used in the story were generated using AI.

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