The Truth Behind How Diamonds are Formed

Diamonds on Biltmore Loan and Jewelry

The Myth on How Diamonds Existed

Carbon is one of the most important chemical element in the world. It has many forms and the three major ones are graphite, coal, and diamond. The most valuable form of carbon is, of course, the diamond. All of these forms are identical in the point of view of chemists, however, they have different molecular structure. All of these forms have their own unique physical appearance.

The myth that all of us know is that diamonds was formed through the appearance of carbon as coal that has undergone high pressure and temperature. This myth has been proven by science as wrong. The formation of coal is through their source material which is the first land plants on earth. And it has been proven that diamonds are much older than the first land plants on earth. This proves that the myth is untrue.

The Formation of the Diamonds in the Mantle of the Earth

In the mantle of the earth is where the commercial diamond deposits were formed and brought over to the surface by volcanic eruptions is the belief of Geologists. They are delivered to the earth surface through diamond-containing rocks called xenoliths. The volcanic eruptions produce pipes on the upper layer of the Earth’s crust . The creation of the lamproite and kimberlite pipes is what the precious stones prospectors are after. The diamonds from the eruptive deposits are eroded and weathered. They are now stored in the sedimentary deposits of coastlines and streams. Extreme pressure and temperature are necessary for the formation of diamonds from the limited areas in the mantle of the earth. The extreme pressure happens 90 miles below the surface of the earth with temperature of at least 1050 degrees Celsius

It’s obvious that coal is not involved in the process because it’s rarely that they are buried 2 miles below the earth’s surface. It’s probably carbon that’s trapped in the interior of the earth during the formation of the earth.

It’s good for all of us to know that not all kimberlite pipes embody precious stone of diamond ore. An area with kimberlite pipes should be studied for viability if it contains a lot of diamond ore before an extraction will be done. Almost all of the commercial diamonds that we enjoy comes from the depths of the mantle of the earth.

There are Diamonds in the Subduction zones

There are tiny diamonds discovered in rocks that geologists think that the formation happened in a subducting plate. The diamond formation is believed to have happened 50 miles below the surface with a temperature of 200 degrees Celsius. Another study has been made where diamonds in Brazil contained tiny mineral inclusions and it suggests the involvement of subducted water in the formation.

Impact Zones also have Diamond Formation

It had been numerous times that the earth has been hit by asteroids. Extreme pressure and temperature are produced when these asteroids hit the earth. Just imagine the impact of a 10-mile wide asteroid that travels at a speed of 9 to 12 miles per second. It will produce an unimaginable energy that can generate temperature hotter than the surface of the sun when it hits the earth. It is estimated that the burst of energy can be equivalent to millions of nuclear weapons.

The pressure and temperature that can be generated by that impact are more than enough for the formation of diamonds. The theory behind this is supported by the fact that tiny diamonds were discovered on numerous impact sites of asteroids.

Outerspace Formation of Diamonds

It was discovered by NASA that there are diamonds of a few nanometers in size in some meteorites. It is estimated that 3 % of carbon in the meteorites are in the form of nanodiamonds. A sample of the Allen Hills Meteorite was cut by the Smithsonian researchers and they discovered a huge amount of tiny diamonds.It is believed that the collisions happened in outer space the same as what happened on the impact sites on our planet.

The Evidence to End the Myth

To end the controversy with regard to coal as an ingredient in the formation of diamonds is to compare the age of the first land plants and diamonds found on earth. The diamonds that we can find on earth formed during the Precambrian Eon. This is about 4,600 million years ago. While the first plants start to exist 4,500 million years ago. It is estimated that the diamonds formed 100 years before the first land plants appeared on earth. Coal comes from the debris of plants. The oldest plant that we have discovered is younger than almost all the diamond that were dated. It’s safe to conclude that coal never took part in the formation of diamonds.

Additional Information on Trigons

The process of the formation of diamonds in nature is very interesting. Diamonds come in various color, sizes, and shape. One of the cool features that you can observe with rough diamonds are some birthmarks that are called trigons. You will notice this from the skin after the extraction of diamond from the ground.

Trigon is a triangular feature of a rough diamond. This occurs during the formation process of diamonds deep within the mantle of the earth. The trigons can come into different shape, usually triangular. The trigons is a good indicator that the rough gemstone is a genuine diamond. Other minerals or gemstones other than diamonds will not exhibit a trigon pattern on its skin.

Trigon is very common with rough diamond it will rarely exhibit on polished diamonds. The rough diamonds are polished off when being cut to produce facets. The trigons disappear from the skin of the diamond during the cutting and polishing process. It would be a bonus if you can see it on your own diamond. You don’t need to be disappointed when it doesn’t show on your gemstone because the clarity grade of your diamond will not be affected

img c/o pixabay