A team of researchers decided to take a look at the insides of a meteorite that hit our planet ten years ago, and stumbled upon diamonds. Then, they managed to find out where they came from, and revealed they didn’t appear as the cosmic object hit other bodies on its journey. This diamond meteorite actually came from a long-lost planet that could produce these minerals, but couldn’t cope with the birth of the universe.
Finding out more about the early solar system
In 2008, the diamond meteorite hit our planet and fell in the Nubian desert. It captured scientific attention since it was the first of its kind to be monitored when it was still an asteroid, and watched as it turned into a meteor. They collected pieces of the object, and even gave it a name – Almahatta Sitta.
Now, researchers decided to take a closer look at these pieces, and discovered it was a diamond meteor. More precisely, it contained small pieces of the meteor. However, this wasn’t the only interesting thing about it. These diamonds came into being on an ancient planet when the solar system came into being.
However, there was no impact that produced the minerals. They established the diamonds had needed a pressure of 200,000 bar to be created, so they must have been formed inside this ancient planet. Given these figures, it should have been about the size of Mercury or Mars.
The diamond meteorite was part of the ancient planet
These findings are impressive since they highlight a really obscure period. By looking at the diamond meteorite, researchers could see how the solar system must have been like at the beginning. Judging from other similar rocks called ureilite, we can tell all primitive materials in the universe contained diamonds.
These findings suggest this diamond meteorite is actually a part of that ancient planet. The tiny minerals couldn’t have formed during an impact, since they are too small. Therefore, the body they belonged to must have been swallowed whole by a bigger object.
The study was published in the journal Nature Communications.
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