In a recently accepted study in the journal, Physical Review Letters, researchers have successfully created a new carbon allotrope that resembles diamond. The discovery was made by the Stanford and Carnegie team of scientists after taking glassy carbon, similar to graphite, and compressing it with over 40 GPa, or more than 400,000 times normal atmospheric pressure. The extreme pressure caused the bonds in the glassy carbon to change in such a way that they formed diamond-like strength. The transition appears to be reversible as well when pressure is released. The new material is amorphous and does not have a long-range order, meaning that it is not organized in the repeating atomic units seen in crystalline solids (such as diamonds and graphite). This new allotrope may have an advantage over diamonds if its hardness is equally strong in all directions, unlike in diamonds, where direction and orientation matters. This new high-pressure carbon allotrope may open doors to new cutting tools, wear-resistant parts for transportation, and high-pressure and extreme environment research.
Source: Science Daily