Scientists discover diamonds formed inside a long-lost planet of the Solar System

Scientists discover diamonds formed inside a long-lost planet of the Solar System

Scientists discover diamonds formed inside a long-lost planet of the Solar System

The crashing of the meteorite was witnessed by many in the town of Wadi Halfa and at a railway stop in the Nubian desert, known as "Station Six".

This planet, which is believed to be somewhere between the moon and Mars in size, is thought to have collided with other objects during the first 10 million years of the solar system and no longer exists as a whole, according to astronomy news site Space. The space rock, now dubbed 2008 TC3, didn't leave any damage but the fragments that fell on the ground after that explosion could be the key to understanding the history of our solar system, particularly planets that faded away with time. Because diamonds are forged at enormous pressures and temperatures, typically deep inside the planet, the various materials that get trapped inside are quite hard to get a hold of at the surface - and diamonds can preserve them for billions of years.

The Swiss scientific team that made the discovery said in the study that the diamonds were formed at 197,385 times the pressure of Earth's atmosphere at sea level.

A chemical map shows sulfur (red) and iron (yellow) inside the inclusions in the diamond matrix. This only happens within a planetary body.

Almahata Sitta is classified as ureilite.

These meteorites-referred to as Almahata Sitta-belong to a rare type, known as ureilites-rocky meteorites with a unique mineralogical composition that contain diamonds.

The researchers studied the diamond samples using a combination of advanced transmission electron microscopy techniques at EPFL's Interdisciplinary Centre for Electron Microscopy.

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The size of the diamonds is another clue that we're dealing with some very peculiar objects.

While there are eight main planets orbiting the solar system, an worldwide team of scientists believes that perhaps there could have been another planet that could have ceased to exist at the time when the planets and the solar system itself were chaotically forming. The diamonds are said to be evidence of the early worlds.

A colorized image shows the diamond phase (blue), inclusions (yellow) and the graphite region.

Also, the diamonds would have formed deep within whatever planet it was from, notes the report.

This holds true for diamonds formed in space as well. Some of these bodies were almost as big as Mars and one of them, dubbed Theia, collided with Earth to throw our moon into orbit.

In the new study, lead author Farhang Nabiei, a materials scientist at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, in Switzerland, and colleagues detailed what they found upon analyzing the inclusions inside the ureilite diamonds.

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