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MASSIVE DIAMOND CACHE FOUND



Experts say precious gemstone may be hidden 160 KM below Earth’s surface.




There may be more than a quadrillion tonnes of diamond hidden below 160 KM below the Earth’s surface, far deeper than any drilling expedition has ever reached, according to a study.
Scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US and colleagues said the findings are unlikely to set off a diamond rush. The ultradeep cache may be scattered within cratonic roots – the oldest and most immovable sections of rock that lie beneath the centre of most continental tectonic plates, they said.

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Shaped like inverted mountains, cratons can stretch as deep as 321 KM through the Earth’s crust and into its mantle; geologists refer to their deepest sections as “roots”. In the study published in the journal ‘Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems’, scientists estimates that cratonic roots may contain one to two percent diamond.
Considering the total volume of cratonic roots in the Earth, the team figures that about a quadrillion tonnes of diamond are scattered within these ancient rocks, 144 to 241 km below the surface.
“This shows that diamond is not perhaps this exotic mineral, nut on the (geological) scaleof things, it is relatively common,” said Ulrich faul, a research scientist in MIT.
“We can’t get at them, but still there than we have ever though before.” Faul said.



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STASH DISCOVERED WHILE STUDYING SOUND WAVES OF EARTHQUAKES
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  •           Using seismic technology to analyse how sound waves pass through the Earth, scientists detected the treasure trove in rocks called cratonic roots.
  • ·         Cratonic roots are shaped like inverted mountains that stretch through the Earth’s crust and into the mantle
  • ·         These are “the oldest and most immovable sections of rock that lie beneath the centre of most continental tectonic plates,” explained the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in a state ment.


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MADE UP OF PURE CARBON, FORMED UNDER INTENSE HEAT
  • Diamonds are made of pure carbons and are formed under high-pressure and extreme temperatures deep in the Earth. They emerge near the surface only through volcanic eruptions that occur rarely – on the order of every few tens of millions of years.

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The researchers came to the conclusion after puzzling over an anomaly in seismic data. For the past few decades, agencies such as the US Geological Survey have kept global records of seismic acrivity – essentially, sound waves travelled through the Earth that are triggered by earthquakes, tsunamis, explosions, and other ground-shaking sources.


Seismic receivers around the world pick up sound waves from such sources, at various speeds and intensities, which seismologists can use to determine where, for example, an earthquake originated. Scientists can also use this seismic data to construct an image of what Earth’s  interior look like.


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Sound waves move at various speeds through the Earth, depending on the temperature, density, and composition of the rocks  through which they travel.


Scientists have used this relationship between seismic velocity and rock compostion to estimate the types of rocks that make up the Earth’s crust and parts of the upper antle, also known as the lithosphere.   


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