Diamond

July 3, 2016

Diamond is the hardest mineral in the world, with a hardness of 10 on Moh’s hardness scale. Diamond is composed completely of carbon atoms arranged in a strong crystal lattice. It is so hard because the carbon atoms are bonded together via extremely strong covalent bonds. There are usually hardly any impurities in diamond due to the rigidity of its lattice, but when there is nitrogen or boron present, the diamond will turn yellow or blue respectively.   Diamond is formed at extremely high pressures and temperatures deep under the Earth’s surface. This depth usually varies between 140 – 190 kilometres into the Earth’s mantle. Minerals containing carbon, provide the source material, and the diamond crystal will grow over a time period of 1 billion to 3.3 billion years. The diamond will then be brought to the surface by violent volcanic eruptions, and the magma (containing the diamond) will cool and solidify into rocks known as kimberlites and lamproites.   Diamond is u