Scientists Find Diamond Planet

Whirling dead star crystallized carbon into a 12-mile gem
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 25, 2011 7:03 PM CDT
Updated Aug 28, 2011 5:54 PM CDT
Scientists Find Diamond Planet
Astronomers have found a 12-mile diamond planet whirling in the sky.   (Swinburne Astronomy Productions)

(Newser) – If a diamond is a girl's best friend, then maybe women aren't from Venus, after all: Astronomers combing the southern sky have found a diamond planet, reports Space.com. Dubbed the rather unglamorous PSR J1719-1438, the alien planet is the remnant of a dead star and spins 10,000 times a minute around a white dwarf—creating pressure so high that the dead star's carbon has been crystallized into an actual diamond.

The planet is about 12 miles across, reports Reuters, but has 1.4 times the density of our sun. But just like a diamond, the trip is forever: The planet is about 4,000 light-years from Earth. Watch a video explaining the phenomenon over at Space.com. (Read more diamond planet stories.)

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