Melting and Freezing Diamonds
Date: May 2005
When a diamond melts, will it reform into a diamond when
it cools? If not, what happens?
If you were able to melt a diamond (this would have to be done in a
container free of oxygen or the diamond would burn), when it cooled it
would not be a diamond anymore. Note that the diamond is made of the
element carbon. To be a diamond the carbon atoms have to be in a special
order or stacking relative to each other. When you melt the diamond the
carbon atoms are no longer in this special order and when it cools back
down they do not return to the original stacking.
There are other forms of carbon, such as graphite and amorphous
carbon. Most likely you would end up with amorphous carbon.
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Update: June 2012