Scientists melt diamonds

By | November 9, 2006

Scientists melt diamonds

Reducing a diamond to liquid is not easy. That’s why scientists used the world’s largest X-ray generator, the Z machine, to subject nanometers thick tiny squares of diamond to immense pressure — 10 million times the atmospheric pressure at sea level.????”It’s very difficult to reach those pressures,” said Marcus Knudson, a Sandia experimenter.

????The pressure was created by using?the machine’s magnetic fields to hurl small plates at the diamond at 34 kilometers per second (21 miles per second).

????Why? Researchers wanted to know?how?diamond reacts to a range of extreme pressures. They want to know if diamond could be used to encase BB-sized fuel pellets needed to?power a nuclear fusion reaction. – xin

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