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Name: Rickard
Status: Other
Age: 30s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: March 2001

Diamonds and coal are made from the same material - carbon. Is it probable or possible to find them in the same location?

It is highly improbable. Diamonds are made under conditions of extreme temperature and pressure in the earth's mantle. Coal is made by compaction of dead vegetation near the surface of the earth. If coal were to be transported to the earth's mantle, some of it may be transformed to diamond, but then it would no longer be coal.

Richard E. Barrans Jr., Ph.D.
Assistant Director
PG Research Foundation, Darien, Illinois


Somewhere in the NEWTON archive is a question about diamonds and coal that I answered some time ago. You may want to take a look at that also.

Diamonds are not likely to be found with coal (although it is theoretically possible), because diamonds are created from virtually pure graphite (carbon) and tremendous pressure. Coal has significant impurities (having resulted from decayed organic material it is not pure carbon) and normally resulted from less pressure.

David R. Cook
Atmospheric Research Section
Environmental Research Division
Argonne National Laboratory

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