A new study conducted by researchers revealed a quadrillion tons of diamonds lying deep below the surface of our planet.
Published in the journal Advancing Earth and Space Science, the study conducted by researchers from the Massachusets Institute of Technology revealed that a quadrillion tons of diamonds are buried below the Earth’s surface. Meaning, the precious stone is not as rare as we believed it to be.
The discovery may appear to be good news to diamond enthusiasts. However, a massive diamond rush is far from happening anytime soon. Why?
According to the researchers, the vast deposit of diamonds sits about 90 to 150 miles from our planet’s surface. To date, the deepest man-made hole ever dug, the SG-3 from the Kola Superdeep Borehole in Russia, is only 7.5 miles deep. That’s not even 10 percent of the estimated depth where the diamonds are currently lying.
The researchers came across the diamonds by analyzing the seismic records produced by sound waves traveling through our planet. These waves are caused by different ground-shaking forces. The scientists reportedly used the “relationship between seismic velocity and rock composition to estimate the types of rocks that make up the Earth’s crust and parts of the upper mantle, also known as the lithosphere.”
The team of researchers estimated that the cratonic roots – the oldest and most immovable sections of rock that lie beneath the center of most continental tectonic plates – is made of about 1 to 2 percent diamond. Taking into consideration the total volume of cratonic roots in our planet, the researchers were able to figure that there are about a quadrillion tons of diamonds within the ancient rocks.
“This shows that diamond is not perhaps this exotic mineral, but on the [geological] scale of things, it’s relatively common,” Ulrich Faul, an MIT’s Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences researcher, said. “We can’t get at them, but still, there is much more diamond there than we have ever thought before.”