February 13, 2004: The Biggest Diamond IN THE UNIVERSE!

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A Brief History

On February 13, 2004, astronomers discovered that a white dwarf star known as BPM37093 is actually the largest diamond yet discovered in the universe!

Digging Deeper

Digging deeper, we find our great gem in the constellation Centaurus, about 50 light years away.

White dwarf stars are now known to consist largely of crystallized carbon, which we know better as diamond!  With a mass of 11 x 10 to the 29th power in U.S. pounds, the pulsating orb has been described as being 10 billion trillion trillion carats by the television show Modern Marvels (in a program about carbon), making it a bit more than the mass of our Sun.

If only we could send a spacecraft and mine the star as depicted in the John Wright novel Count to a Trillion. (Although in that book the object of the mining was anti-matter instead of diamonds.)  At least the trip would pay for itself!

Of interest to Beatles fans, the star has been named Lucy after the Beatles song Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds!

Question for students (and subscribers): Do you own a any diamonds?  Please let us know in the comments section below this article.

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Historical Evidence

For more information, please see…

Clarke, Phil.  Astronomy and Space (Usborne Fact Cards).  Usborne, 2011.

Sung, James.  Diamond Nanotechnology: Synthesis and Applications.  Jenny Stanford Publishing, 2009.


About Author

Major Dan

Major Dan is a retired veteran of the United States Marine Corps. He served during the Cold War and has traveled to many countries around the world. Prior to his military service, he graduated from Cleveland State University, having majored in sociology. Following his military service, he worked as a police officer eventually earning the rank of captain prior to his retirement.