Nanodiamonds can be formed by applying ultra-high pressure to PET bottles

Research results have shown that nanodiamonds can be made by applying heat of thousands of degrees to plastic bottles and ultra-high pressure up to one million times the atmospheric pressure of the earth.

An international research team led by Dr. Dominique Krauss, a professor of physics at the University of Rostock in Germany, irradiated a super-powerful laser from the ‘Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC) to ‘polyethylene terephthalate’ (PET) used in water bottles and food containers, and conducted X-ray diffraction. The results of observing how atoms are rearranged to create nanodiamonds using this technique were published in the scientific journal ‘Science Advances’.

According to SLAC and the science media ‘ScienceNews’, the formation of diamonds was first confirmed in an experiment that mimics the ultra-high temperature and high pressure environment deep inside ice-covered giant planets such as Uranus and Neptune. Rain’ hypothesis has been put forward.

At the time, the test subject was plastic, a mixture of hydrogen and carbon, the main chemical components of Uranus and Neptune.

Considering the fact that oxygen also exists on these planets, Krauss’ research team conducted an experiment on PET, which has a more similar chemical composition.

Through this, it was confirmed that nanodiamonds were formed at lower temperatures and pressures than previously observed in the presence of oxygen.

Professor Krauss, who is also a researcher at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rosendorf Institute (HZDR), explains, “Oxygen separates carbon and hydrogen atoms and absorbs hydrogen, thereby facilitating the bonding of the remaining carbon atoms, promoting diamond formation.” did.

The team predicts that diamonds from Neptune or Uranus are much larger than the nanodiamonds produced in the experiment and could weigh in the millions of carats. said there may be.

The findings suggest that diamond rains on the myriad of icy planets in the universe may be more common than previously thought, the researchers said.

Above all, the research team emphasized that the technology used in this experiment will be able to make nanodiamonds used in medical devices and quantum sensors.

Nanodiamonds are made by exploding diamond chunks and are difficult to control because they have different sizes and shapes.

International Team [email protected]

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