Diamond the Size of a Planet

It’s the kind of thing science fiction writers dream about, only it’s real.

In the constellation of Cancer, orbiting a star much like our own sun, is 55 Cancri e. This newly discovered planet is twice the size of the Earth, and its mass is 8 times greater.

Astronomers studying the planet, Nikku Madhusudhan and Olivier Mousis, estimate that up to a third of the planet is composed of diamond.

Speculators thinking of taking advantage of this unique opportunity would have to get used to the 18 hour year and surface temperature of 1,648 C. They would also have to be prepared for an 80 light year round trip.

For those making plans, further details are to be published in Astrophysical Journal Letters.


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