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DIAMOND What is diamond? Diamond is the purest form of natural carbon. It occurs as small crystals embedded in rocks. These are supposed to have been formed by the crystallization of carbon under extreme pressure and temperature in the interior of the earth. Nowadays, synthetic industrial diamonds are being manufactured by subjecting graphite to very high temperatures and pressures. Carbon atoms in diamond have tetrahedral structure. Each atom of carbon is surrounded by four other atoms that together forms the tetrahedral structure, as shown in the figure 10.1.   Physical Properties of Diamond Diamond is the purest form of carbon. It is the densest of all allotropes of carbon. Diamond’s tetrahedral structure, makes it the hardest naturally occurring substance. It is brittle and transparent. Pure diamond is colourless. Diamond has very high refractive index. When properly cut and polished, it allows the light to undergo total internal reflection that makes… Read More »DIAMOND



Diamond Has a very high melting point (almost 4000°C). Very strong carbon-carbon covalent bonds have to be broken throughout the structure before melting occurs. Is very hard. This is again due to the need to break very strong covalent bonds operating in 3-dimensions. Doesn’t conduct electricity. All the electrons are held tightly between the atoms, and aren’t free to move. Is insoluble in water and organic solvents. There are no possible attractions which could occur between solvent molecules and carbon atoms which could outweigh the attractions between the covalently bound carbon atoms.   The giant covalent structure of graphite Graphite has a layer structure which is quite difficult to draw convincingly in three dimensions. The diagram below shows the arrangement of the atoms in each layer, and the way the layers are spaced.   The bonding in graphite Each carbon atom uses three of its electrons to form simple bonds… Read More »THE PHYSICAL PROPERTIES OF DIAMOND

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