Super-hard diamond material developed capable of cutting through ultra-solid materials in mining

Nano-sized Lonsdaleite, a hexagonal diamond only found naturally at the site of meteorite impacts, has been created.

Jamie Kidston, ANUA diamond in the anvil the scientists used to make the nano-sized Lonsdaleite.

A research team has artificially made Lonsdaleite in a diamond anvil at 400°C, halving the temperature at which it can be made in a laboratory.

The discovery of the nano-crystalline hexagonal diamond was made possible by collaboration between physicists from Australia and elsewhere around the world including experts from RMIT, the University of Sydney and the USA using state-of-the-art instrumentation.

Associate Professor Jodie Bradby from the Australian National University, who was involved in the research said: “This new diamond is not going to be on any engagement rings.

“You’ll more likely find it on a mining site but I still think that diamonds are a scientist’s best friend. Any time you need a super-hard material to cut something, this new diamond has the potential to do it more easily and more quickly.”