The discovery of what appears to be a diamond planet that is abundant in diamonds and that orbits a nearby star has made the universe a little bit more prosperous.
Diamond Planet where you could do a lot of things
According to a new study, the rocky world, which has been given the name 55 Cancri e, is only twice as large as Earth but has eight times as much mass, which qualifies it as a “super Earth.” The close-in planet that was found to have crossed in front of its parent star for the first time in 2011 completes one orbit around its star every 18 hours. Because of this, the temperatures at the planet’s surface can reach an intolerable 3,900 degrees Fahrenheit (2,150 degrees Celsius), which, when combined with the presence of carbon, creates the ideal environment for the formation of diamonds.
The Spitzer Space Telescope at NASA gathered data on the planet’s orbital distance and mass, and then computer models used that information to create a picture of the chemical composition of 55 Cancri e.
“It’s amazing that we finally have evidence of its existence in the real universe,” said the study’s leader, Nikku Madhusudhan, who is a postdoctoral researcher at Yale University. “Science fiction has dreamed of diamond planets for many years,” Madhusudhan said. “We finally have evidence of its existence in the real universe.”
“It’s the first time we know of such an exotic planet that we think was born mostly of carbon—which really makes this a fundamental game-changer in our understanding of what’s possible in planetary chemistry,” said one researcher. “This is really a fundamental game-changer in our understanding of what’s possible in planetary chemistry.”
The jewel-like planet is located in the northern constellation Cancer only 40 light-years away, making it a relatively close neighbour to Earth. When the sky is dark, the host star of 55 Cancri e can be seen very easily with the naked eye.
The Chemistry on Diamond Planet Is Weird – 55 Cancri e
The new models are consistent with earlier research that demonstrated the star that served as 55 Cancri e’s parent was extremely rich in carbon—much more so than the sun.
According to Madhusudhan, whose research will be published in an upcoming issue of the journal Astrophysical Journal Letters, “if we make the assumption that the star and its surrounding planets are all born from the same primordial disc of material, then it makes sense that the entire planetary system would be carbon rich.”
David Spergel, an astronomer at Princeton University, believes that the discovery of the diamond planet likely marks the first discovery of an entirely new class of planets whose chemistry has never been seen before. (Related: “Diamond Planets Hint at the Dazzling Promise of Other Worlds.”) “Diamond Planets”
According to Spergel, who was not involved in the new study but did comment on it, “this planetary system is filled with carbon,” in contrast to our solar system, which is dominated by oxygen and silicates.
“While it is still unknown exactly what implication this will have on our understanding of evolution of planetary systems,” he said, “there’s no doubt that it is an important step towards understanding the full diversity of planets.” “While it is still unknown exactly what implication this will have on our understanding of evolution of planetary systems,” he said.
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