This Rare Diamond Found at a Depth of 322 Km Underground

This Rare Diamond Found at a Depth of 322 Km Underground

Scientists from the American Gemological Institute have discovered rare diamonds from the upper layers of the Earth’s mantle about 322 km below the soil layer. Photos / Live Science

NEW YORK – Scientists from the United States Gemological Institute have discovered a rarefied top layer about 322 kilometers below the soil layer. This rare diamond also indicates the presence of water deep under the Earth’s mantle.

This rare type of diamond indicates that water can penetrate deeper into the earth’s interior than previously thought. Evidence of water in the Earth’s interior was only recently discovered after the rare diamonds were mined.

Although more than 70% of the planet is covered in water, there is also water in minerals more than 322 kilometers underground, including the upper mantle, the semi-soft layer above which the crust floats. Scientists have long believed that as the upper mantle transitions to a hotter and denser lower mantle, minerals can contain less water.

In a new study published in Nature Geoscience on September 26, 2022, researchers found that diamonds contain inclusions, or small fragments of other minerals, that can hold more water. The presence of water is believed to exist at the boundary between the upper and lower mantle.

Inside the diamond inclusions, the researchers found a mineral called ringwoodite, which has the same chemical composition as olivine. It is a large part of the upper mantle but forms under extreme pressure and pressure.

This Rare Diamond Found at a Depth of 322 Km Underground

Ringwoodite is usually found in the transition zone between the upper and lower mantle, approximately 410 to 660 km below the Earth’s surface and can contain more water than the minerals Bridgmanite and ferropericlase.

The results suggest that there may be more water on Earth than scientists think. These conditions can affect our understanding of the deep-layer water cycle and plate tectonics.

“The results were unexpected,” said study lead author Tingting Gu, a mineral physicist at Purdue University in Indiana and a researcher at the American Gemological Institute in New York City.

Gu added that inclusions sometimes appear as spots on diamonds, making them undesirable. However, embedding can provide valuable scientific information. “Don’t be afraid to buy diamonds with inclusions. You never know what they might contain,” he said.

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