Scientists grow diamonds in just 15 minutes with new 'gem-changing' method

New diamond-growing technique can produce precious stones without a seed

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Scientists grow diamonds in just 15 minutes with new gem-changing method
Diamond-production revolutionised with innovative new technique. — Unsplash

Forget about waiting millions of years for a diamond to form because scientists have recently found a groundbreaking method to do that in just 15 minutes.

Natural diamonds form in Earth's mantle, the molten zone buried hundreds of miles beneath the planet's surface, under tremendous pressures and scorching temperatures exceeding 1,500°C, Live Science reported.

This process can take one to 3.3 billion years to form a diamond naturally.

The current method for producing 99% artificial diamonds involves high-pressure and high-temperature (HPHT) growth, where coax carbon is dissolved in liquid metals, like iron, to convert into diamond around a small seed.

However, this process is difficult to maintain and only produces relatively small diamonds.

An alternative method called chemical vapor deposition, eliminates some challenges but still requires seeds.

However, a team led by Rodney Ruoff, a physical chemist at the Institute for Basic Science in South Korea, found a new technique, allowing scientists to synthesise diamonds at normal, atmospheric pressure without a starter gem.

This could make the precious gemstones much easier to grow in the lab and eliminate some drawbacks of both synthesis processes.

The team published their findings in the journal Nature in April.