March 23, 2018

Rare and unseen the mineral was found inside of the diamond

11 March 2018, 02:22 | Winifred Adams

Diamond discovery under pressure

A Mineral Which Has Never Been Studied Before Was Discovered Inside A Small Diamond

"The only possible way to keep this mineral at the Earth's surface is when he is locked in a container, such as a diamond", explained Pearson.

One of the most abundant minerals in the world - that had never before been seen on the Earth's surface - has finally been eyed by scientists, thanks to one of the world's most sought-after gems.

The paper on the perovskite diamond appeared online Wednesday in the journal Nature, under the title "CaSiO3 perovskite in diamond indicates the recycling of oceanic crust into the lower mantle". Graham Pearson, a professor at University of Alberta (UBC) Department of Earth and Atmospheric Science stated that the mineral recently found is available only "deep" inside the Earth's mantle at a depth of 700 kilometers.

"Laboratory experiments and seismology data have created a clear theoretical picture of the most abundant minerals that comprise the deeper parts of the Earth's mantle".

The diamond was discovered less than 0.6 miles below the Earth's surface, but the researchers note in the study that it was in fact a "super-deep" diamond.

It is said to be the world's richest source of rare blue diamonds and has produced over a quarter of the planet's diamonds with a value higher than 400 carats.

According to Pearson, the diamond, which was discovered at a depth of about half a mile, will support more than 24 billion Pascals of pressure.

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It is true that the history of the planet Earth has been only recorded partially.

The mantle in one of the Earth's underground layers and is formed by very hot rocks which are exposed to a tremendous pressure.

Most of the diamonds here on Earth are usually born closer to the surface at around 150 to 200 kilometers deep. These ice VII samples are the first time this form of crystalized water has been seen in nature and led the International Mineralogical Association to declare ice VII as a new type of mineral.

The diamond's structure managed to protect the CaSiO3 and prevented its crystal lattice from being deformed while the diamond moved to the Earth's surface.

"The diamond lattice doesn't relax much, so the volume of the inclusion remains nearly constant whether it's in the Earth's mantle or in your hand", said Oliver Tschauner, a professor of geoscience at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

The chunk of calcium silicate perovskite within the gemstone was visible with the naked eye after the diamond was polished, the researchers wrote, but proper analysis and imaging required an worldwide effort. "It provides fundamental proof of what happens to the fate of oceanic plates as they descend into the depths of the Earth", Pearson said in the statement.

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