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Scientists Discover a Diamond Planet

Diamond
Getty Images, photo by Dan Kitwood

Diamonds are a girl’s best friend and very rare here on earth but scientists have discovered a planet that is made largely of diamonds. It’s called 55 Cancri e and is our Milky Way Galaxy about 40 light years from earth. According to Yale University researcher Nikku Madhusudhan the radius is twice that of Earth’s and it takes only 18 hours to orbit its sun. It’s so close to its sun the temperature on the surface is 3,900 degrees Fahrenheit, making too hot to sustain life.

 

Planets like this are a lot different than the Earth because they’re composed mainly of carbon in the form of diamonds and graphite where Earth is rich in oxygen and low in carbon. 55 Cancri e is so close to the Earth you can see it with the human eye in the evening sky (if you know where to look) and is twice the size of Earth. In an article in Space.com, the evolution of the planet was much different than that of Earth’s and the planets diamond nature means it’s not a water planet. Follow up observations will be needed to determine the make-up of the atmosphere but for now it looks like it is a diamond planet.

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