DailyDirt: Harder Than Diamond (But Not As Pretty Or Available)

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Diamond is a fascinating material. We haven't quite perfected how to make diamonds, so they're still rare -- and somewhat valuable, depending on the eye of the beholder. One aspect of diamond that everyone learns in school is that it is really, really hard. However, the title of "hardest" material might have to be awarded to other exotic substances. After you've finished checking out those links, take a look at our holiday gift ideas for cool gadgets and other awesome stuff.
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Filed Under: aggregated diamond nanorods, allotrope, carbon, diamond-like, diamonds, hexagonal diamond, lonsdaleite, materials, q-carbon, ultrahard fullerite, ultrahard materials


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  • identicon
    Lawrence D’Oliveiro, 8 Dec 2015 @ 5:33pm

    Could Other Group-14 Elements Form Long Chains Besides Carbon?

    Under Earth-surface conditions, it seems the answer is no. But what about other conditions, particularly under much higher pressures, or much lower temperatures, or both?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Michael Ho (profile), 8 Dec 2015 @ 5:46pm

      Re: Could Other Group-14 Elements Form Long Chains Besides Carbon?

      Actually... polysilanes, polygermanes, polystannanes, etc exist, but they're not as stable as the carbon analogs. Also, aromatic ring structures aren't favorable with the larger atoms. So nanotube/buckyball/graphene/etc analogs from silicon/etc aren't going to be very likely to form under practical conditions.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Lawrence D’Oliveiro, 8 Dec 2015 @ 7:31pm

        Re: under practical conditions

        Thinking about places like on Titan, inside Jupiter, or even deep underground here on Earth.

        The JOIDES Resolution research ship has set sail for the Indian Ocean to drill the first-ever hole through to the mantle.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Vitomir Jovanovic, 10 Dec 2015 @ 2:29pm

        Re: Re: Could Other Group-14 Elements Form Long Chains Besides Carbon?

        What does that mean term "practical conditions"? If You want to say that there are still no conditions to produce in large quantities, does not mean that there is no chance that something like that in the near future be done.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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