Fancy treating yourself? The world's largest ever blue diamond is going up for auction on May 18 at Christie's in Geneva. But you better have a healthy bank balance: It's expected to sell for somewhere in the region of $59 million.
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Geoengineering — hacking Earth's climate system to reverse global warming — often sounds a bit preposterous, whether we're talking about deploying giant space mirrors or dumping a bunch of iron filings into the ocean. The latest proposal? Dusting the stratosphere with billions of dollars worth of powdered diamond.
A team of scientists just strung heaps of the world's smallest diamonds into superstrong nanothreads. That makes for one impressive (and basically invisible) necklace, but the applications of these nanothreads don't end there. They could someday help string up a lift to space — just like in science fiction.
It is not pleasant inside the core of Jupiter — or any other planet for that matter. However, gaining a better understanding of what's going on in there is key for understanding how these planets form. That's why a team of scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory recently used diamonds and lasers to recreate those very conditions.
Building empires takes money. And building industrial empires takes diamonds, not just for cash, but for the machines and tools that need them to operate. In a remote corner of Siberia, the Mir diamond mine was responsible for funelling diamonds into building the USSR — and it left behind a pit that stretches almost 2km across the surface of the Earth.
It's no surprise that the diamond industry is willing to spend whatever it takes to make the process of mining precious gems even more profitable. And while it already relies on X-ray technology for spotting diamonds on the surface of mined ore, researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute's Development Center for X-ray Technology EZRT have developed a way to now spot them buried inside rocks.
Since graphite — the dark material used in regular old pencils — and diamonds are both made from carbon, it's technically feasible to turn the former into the latter. You just need to apply a little pressure — about 150,000 times what the atmosphere on Earth's surface is like. But researchers at Stanford University claim to have found a shortcut.
You're looking at the oldest fragment of Earth ever found: a zircon 4.375 billion years old, something that has deep implications in our understanding of the planet's formation. While some scientists said other samples weren't genuine, new research just published in the journal Nature Geoscience proves that this is the real McCoy.
As electronic devices get increasingly tiny, heat management becomes a bigger and bigger problem. In gadgets that can't practically house a fan, heat sinks do the job of keeping sensitive electronics cool. So far, the best-performing heat transfer material has been diamond, which any rap video will remind you is crazy expensive. Now, physicists have found that a boron compound could outperform all of Jay-no-hyphen-Z's ice.