Science allowed creating artificial diamonds more than 60 years ago, but even today this process requires a lot of resources and time. A new development by researchers at Stanford University will allow the creation of diamonds from ordinary oil in seconds.
Under natural conditions, diamonds are formed from carbon atoms at a temperature of 625 ° C and a pressure of 20 GPa in fractions of a second. It is noteworthy that the atoms do not pass through another form of carbon – graphite. Researchers managed to recreate such conditions in the laboratory using a special press and laser beams.
To create synthetic diamonds, scientists used a powder derived from oil that looks like crystalline salt. Samples of the substance were loaded into a small chamber between two polished diamonds and created a pressure similar to that found in the center of the earth. Then the samples were heated using a high-power laser, and the resulting “diamondoids”, still containing hydrogen atoms, were treated with a laser of lower power to make traditional diamonds.
The only minus of the technology is that at the current stage of development, diamonds come out the size of a speck of dust. Despite this, the researchers noted that for the first time they were able to penetrate the “secret of creating pure diamonds.” According to them, this opens up enormous prospects for a number of industries.