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Astronomers discover huge diamond planet

Posted on Tuesday, 16 October, 2012 | Comment icon 42 comments | News tip by: jugoso


Image credit: NASA

 
A planet twice the size of the Earth and made up mostly of diamond has been discovered by astronomers.

Known as 55 Cancri e, the planet is one of five in orbit around a star 40 years light years away. The remarkable world is intolerably hot with an orbital period of only 18 hours making it an unlikely place to find life. What makes the planet truly incredible however is the fact that it is comprised primarily of solid diamond.

"This is our first glimpse of a world with a fundamentally different chemistry from Earth," said lead researcher Nikku Madhusudhan. "The surface of this planet is likely covered in graphite and diamond rather than water and granite."

"David Spergel, a professor of astronomy and chair of astrophysical sciences at Princeton University, who is not a co-author of the study, said: "This diamond-rich super-Earth is likely just one example of the rich sets of discoveries that await us as we begin to explore planets around nearby stars."

  View: Full article

 Source: CBC.ca


  Discuss: View comments (42)

   


 
Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #33 Posted by coolguy on 17 October, 2012, 4:17
Great find maybe there is life on this planet..
Comment icon #34 Posted by mysticwerewolf on 17 October, 2012, 4:48
they will need a lot of new tech to even consider mining the thing, Not to mention that if it is diamond then it will shatter when it cools, so we create a tractor beam that can drag it out of it's orbit to some orbit where we can survive, hoping as we do so that there is no strange unique form of life on it that we are destroying,then we let it cool until we can survive on the surface, then mine it and when it gets here diamond will cost the same as copper. i really would like to understand the scientific "guesswork" that allows our scientists to tell that this is solid diamond. my limited in... [More]
Comment icon #35 Posted by King Fluffs on 17 October, 2012, 5:08
I want it.
Comment icon #36 Posted by ouija ouija on 17 October, 2012, 13:19
I'm about to be dull and boring ....... : how do the scientists know this? in the article it seems to be all guesswork, 'possibly' and assumption. How can they guess at the construction of the mass of something so far away? Interesting to be sure, but of little, if any, "mining" value. Too far away, unknown confirmation on the science with respect to a "nearly solid diamond planet", blah, blah, blah... More of an astronomical curiousity than anything else, in my opinion. they will need a lot of new tech to even consider mining the thing, Not to mention that if it is diamond then it will shatte... [More]
Comment icon #37 Posted by deadarise on 17 October, 2012, 17:46
this sound like Superman's Planet Krypton!
Comment icon #38 Posted by Erowin on 17 October, 2012, 18:16
One day, diamonds will be the cheapest substance in the world. everything will be made of diamond. hell, people will make fun of you for having it "wow you still have a toilet made out of diamonds? i didn't think you were THAT poor"
Comment icon #39 Posted by glorybebe on 17 October, 2012, 19:39
Hhhmmm....all I could think of was Avatar-like humans wouldn't mine the crap out of it, when/if they get there.
Comment icon #40 Posted by FlyingAngel on 18 October, 2012, 7:47
One day, diamonds will be the cheapest substance in the world. everything will be made of diamond. hell, people will make fun of you for having it "wow you still have a toilet made out of diamonds? i didn't think you were THAT poor" +1 And the most valuable material would be "wood"
Comment icon #41 Posted by Magiclass on 19 October, 2012, 15:16
Some billionaire nutter will want to go to mine it!
Comment icon #42 Posted by Magiclass on 19 October, 2012, 15:18
Hhhmmm....all I could think of was Avatar-like humans wouldn't mine the crap out of it, when/if they get there. I think it would be wonderful if the human race wasn't so avaricious.


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