26 Aug '11, 12pm
A Planet Made of Diamond
Astronomers think they have recently found a star that was transformed and condensed into a planet made of solid diamond . The team was able to detect the “diamond planet” with the 64m radio telescope in Parkes, Australia, and found out that it orbits an unusual star known as a pulsar. The scientists’ measurements indicate that the planet has slightly more mass than Jupiter, but is 20 times as dense. With the planet likely to be made largely of oxygen and carbon, its high density means it is almost certainly crystalline, meaning that a large part of the planet may be similar to a diamond. The pulsar and its planet are part of the Milky Way’s plane of stars and lie 4,000 light-years away in the constellation of Serpens (the Snake).