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Space Diamonds From Dwarf Planets May Be Future Of Mining & Manufacturing

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 Authored by Victoria Kelly-Clark via The Epoch Times,

Tiny folded diamonds that fell to Earth from an ancient dwarf star may sound like something from an intergalactic feature film, but researchers from Australia and the United Kingdom have proven the existence of the rare gems after examining a stony meteorite.

Scientists from Australia and the UK have established the existence of lonsdaleite, a rare hexagonal diamond, no bigger than a human hair, that researchers note is layered into a distinctive folded pattern, unlike the earth-formed diamonds that have a cubic structure.

The existence of Lonsdaleite—named after the pioneering British crystallographer Dame Kathleen Lonsdale—has previously been the subject of debate because its very existence could not be proven.

The lead scientist on the research team Prof. Andy Tomkins, from Monash University’s School of Earth, Atmosphere, and Environment, said the mysteries of the rare diamond were what drove him continue researching ureilite meteorites in his lab.

Tomkins said it was a case of curiosity-driven science.

“This is exactly the sort of curiosity-piquing observation that sends scientists diving down rabbit holes for months on end,” he said.

Scientists from Australia and the UK have established the existence of lonsdaleite, a rare hexagonal diamond no bigger than human hair. Image shows the ‘The Rock,’ a 228.31-karat pear-shaped white diamond, in Geneva on May 6, 2022. (Fabrice Coffrini/AFP via Getty Images)

Naturally formed ureilite meteorites contains a higher abundance of diamond than any known rock on Earth. They are also one of the few opportunities to study the mantle layer of dwarf planets.

The samples are created when asteroids collide with a planet while still hot, creating the ideal conditions for lonsdaleite and diamond growth due to moderate pressure and rapid temperature drops in the fluid and gas-rich environment.

“These findings help address a long-standing mystery regarding the formation of the carbon phases in ureilites that has been the subject of much speculation,” Tomkins said.

Tomkins also collaborated with researchers from the CSIRO, RMIT University, the Australian Synchrotron, and Plymouth University to discover samples of lonsdaleite in nature, offering an insight into potential replication of the process for industrial purposes.

“These diamonds are quite special,” said Alan Salek, physicist and RMIT PhD researcher.

“Normal diamonds that you would find here on Earth, like on an engagement ring, have a specific atomic structure that’s cubic. These special diamonds are hexagonal in structure.”

“It’s pretty exciting because it’s a new form of material.”

The unique shape is believed to be why lonsdaleite is stronger than any other diamond.

Significant Implications For Mining and Manufacturing

CSIRO scientist Colin MacRae in a media release, said the discovery has enormous potential for industries like mining.

“If something that’s harder than diamond can be manufactured readily, that’s something industry would want to know about,” MacRae said.

Macrae noted that the discovery meant they could find a way to reproduce the mineral.

“Lonsdaleite could be used to make tiny, ultra-hard machine parts if we can develop an industrial process that promotes the replacement of pre-shaped graphite parts by lonsdaleite,” he said.

At present, the current method for producing industrial diamonds involves chemical vapour deposition, in which diamonds are formed onto a substrate from a gas mix at low pressures.

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“Alien bases” may be hiding off the coast of Alaska, researchers say

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An organization of civilian volunteers dedicated to the study of
unidentified flying objects (UFOs) has issued a statement based on
decades of studying eyewitness reports. According to Mutual UFO Network,
“alien bases” may be hiding off the coast of Alaska, reports the-sun.com.

Researchers
say the deep waters in this region may hold something surprising. After
analyzing reports from the ship’s crew from 1945, they hypothesized
that alien objects could be lurking underwater, off the coast of the
state.

Alleged sightings of alien spacecraft nearly 80 years ago
have become a key point in research. Members of the organization believe
that UFOs move over water and may have “bases.”

Researchers
allege crew members on a U.S. Army transporter ship sailing past Island
Adak saw a massive UFO sized 150 to 200 feet emerge from the water.
Although these reports are nowhere to be found, UFO enthusiasts believe
the unidentified flying vehicles likely were used to commute to
different supposed alien bases hiding in the deep waters.

As
the “secret reports” of the sailors aren’t available, investigators
have taken it upon themselves to unravel the mystery surrounding the
unidentified flying objects and they believe the ocean has alien bases
that humans aren’t aware of.

Enthusiasts claim that UFOs may be
using “underwater networks” or wormholes as superhighways to travel
between points in the universe. UFO researcher Johnny Enoch added that
such objects could serve as a vehicle for aliens.

There are also
theories that other places on Earth could serve as bases for alien life.
A mountain in Seoul, South Korea is believed to be hiding a UFO,
according to Dr. Steven Greer.

An episode of the series “The
Alaska Triangle” features satellite imagery that claims to show one of
the “alien bases” in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of California.

Meanwhile,
another researcher featured in the program showed markings from the sea
bed that she claimed could have been roadways for aliens.

While
the mysteries of the ocean remain unsolved, researchers continue their
search, trying to unravel the mystery of what may be hiding in the
depths of the waters off the coast of Alaska.

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Enormous City-Size Comet Racing Towards Earth Grows ‘Devil Horns’ After Massive Eruption

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A volcanic comet the size of a mid-sized US city has
violently exploded for the second time in four months as it continues
racing toward the earth. And following the massive eruption, the cloud
of ice and gas sprouted what looked like a pair of gigantic devil horns.

The city-sized comet, named 12P/Pons-Brooks, is a cryovolcanic — or
cold volcano — comet. It has a solid nucleus, with an estimated diameter
of 18.6 miles, and is filled with a mix of ice, dust and gas known as
cryomagma. The nucleus is surrounded by a fuzzy cloud of gas called a
coma, which leaks out of the comet’s interior.

When solar radiation heats the comet’s insides, the pressure builds up
and the comet violently explodes, ejaculating its ice-cold innards into
space through seeping cracks in the nucleus’s shell.

Live Science report:
On Oct. 5, astronomers detected a large outburst from 12P, after the
comet became dozens of times brighter due to the extra light reflecting
from its expanded coma, according to the British Astronomical Association (BAA), which has been closely monitoring the comet 

Over the next few days, the comet’s coma expanded further and developed its “peculiar horns,” Spaceweather.com
reported. Some experts joked that the irregular shape of the coma also
makes the comet look like a science fiction spaceship, such as the
Millennium Falcon from Star Wars.

The unusual shape of the comet’s coma is likely due to an irregularity in the shape of 12P’s nucleus, Richard Miles, a BAA astronomer, told Live Science after the comet’s previous eruption.
The outflowing gas is likely being partially obstructed by a notch
sticking out on the nucleus, Miles said. As the gas continues to expand
away from the comet, the irregularity in the coma’s shape becomes more
defined and noticeable, he added.

12P is currently hurtling toward the inner solar system, where it
will be slingshotted around the sun on its highly elliptical 71-year
orbit around our home star — similar to the green comet Nishimura, which
pulled off a near-identical maneuver on Sept. 17

12P will reach its closest point to Earth on April 21, 2024, when it
may become visible to the naked eye before being catapulted back toward
the outer solar system. It will not return until 2095.

This is the second time 12P has sprouted its horns this year. On July
20, astronomers witnessed the comet blow its top for the first time in
69 years (mainly due to its outbursts being less frequent and harder to
spot during the rest of its orbit). On that occasion, 12P’s coma grew to
around 143,000 miles (230,000 km), which is around 7,000 times wider
than the comet’s nucleus.

It is unclear how large the coma grew during the most recent
eruption, but there are signs the outburst was “twice as intense” as the
previous one, the BAA noted. By now, the coma has likely shrunk back to
near its normal size.

As 12P continues to race toward the sun, there is a high probability
that we will witness several more major eruptions. It is possible that
those eruptions will be even bigger than the most recent one as the
comet soaks up more solar radiation, according to Spaceweather.com.

But 12P is not the only volcanic comet that astronomers are currently
monitoring: 29P/Schwassmann-Wachmann (29P) — the most volatile volcanic
comet in the solar system — has also had several noticeable eruptions
in the last year.

In December 2022, 29P experienced its largest eruption in around 12 years, which sprayed around 1 million tons of cryomagma into space. And in April this year, for the first time ever, scientists accurately predicted one of 29P’s eruptions before it actually happened, thanks to a slight increase in the comet’s brightness in the lead-up to the icy explosion.

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