Huge diamond cache likely buried in Earths interior

Quadrillion tons’ of diamonds located 160km below Earth’s surface researchers say

And there is hope for the hopeful as scientist digging for diamond brings home the gem of a news that there may be more than quadrillion tonnes of diamond buried 100 miles below the surface of the earth, far deeper than any drilling expedition has ever reached.

Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Harvard, the Carnegie Institution of Washington and several other universities used seismic devices to measure the speed of sound waves traveling through the Earth's crust.

The researchers estimate that the bottom sections of these cratons, or roots, may be composed of 1-2% diamond.

Dr Ulrich Faul, a research scientist at MIT, explained that one of diamond's many special properties is the speed at which sound waves travel through the material.

As it turns out, diamonds in the Earth are much more common than we thought.

To do this, they first used seismic data to generate a 3D model of the velocities of seismic waves traveling through the Earth's major cratons. By studying the wave shapes it's possible to get an idea of the Earth's interior structure and its composition. "Since these areas are hard to sample directly but are not impossible, because sometimes parts of these cratonic roots are brought to the surface by removing the magma, it is now the best explanation".

The sound wave goes at different speeds and it depends on the composition, density of rocks and the temperature of the minerals that they go through. Since these vibrations can change, which vary depending on the structure, temperature and density of different rocks, researchers can use these recordings to create an image of the earth's accessible interior.They found that underground vibes produced from natural processes such as quake and tsunami rapidly grow during cratonic roots; Speedup was relatively higher than the fact that cratons are cooler and less dense than the surrounding structures, both of which are the conditions that accelerate the waves.

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In fact, it actually makes sense that their roots are partly made out of diamond, considering that these precious minerals - churned inside Earth's fiery interior and pushed upward by volcanic eruptions - generally come closer to the surface through channels forming at the edge of cratonic roots.

Cratons are ancient, unmoving sections in the center of tectonic plates. This way, researchers find a method to find out which rocks can be found in the surface of Earth - they compare the velocities of the sound waves.

"Cratons are a tiny bit less dense than their surroundings, so they don't get subducted back into the Earth but stay floating on the surface".

"It's circumstantial evidence, but we've pieced it all together", Faul said.

"This is how they preserve the oldest rocks".

"We went through all the different possibilities, from every angle, and this is the only one that's left as a reasonable explanation", Faul said.

That diamond on your wedding ring isn't as rare as you might think.

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