Link #118: You Can Become a Diamond in a Week After You Die!



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Link #118: You Can Become a Diamond in a Week After You Die!

Diamond by nafets/CC0 Public Domain Image.

It would be a sight to see the diamond rain on Neptune or Uranus. It would be even cooler to see a diamond iceberg floating over a sea of liquid carbon on Saturn or Jupiter. These diamond formations actually exist on these planets but to see them we’ll have to wait for a very long time so that we have the technology to go there.

Diamonds have always fascinated us humans. They don’t have to be out of this world for us to appreciate them. We love diamonds from Earth too. Now, there’s a way through which you can turn yourself into diamond too and, no, we don’t mean Emma Frost from X-Men. We mean an actual one carat diamond! How is this possible? It’s possible because of a company known as Algordanza.

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What Are Diamonds and How Are They Formed?

HPHT diamonds
Diamonds by Materialscientist/cc0

In order to understand how you can become a diamond, you need to understand what a diamond is made up of and what goes into its making. Diamonds are nothing but atoms that have combined in a certain manner. In fact, if there are impurities in a diamond, then it means that some element other than carbon entered into the process.

You’ll find that diamonds with impurities usually end up showing colours like blue, pink, and even black amongst others. However, carbon atoms will only fuse together in the right way to form a diamond when they’re put under a lot of pressure and intensely high temperatures.

How Can You Become a Diamond a Week After Your Death?

Cremation of a dead body
Cremation of a dead body by Henry Mühlpfordt/GFDL.

The human body is approximately 18 percent carbon. When a body is cremated, nothing is left behind except bones. These bones are then ground and given to the family of the deceased. These ashes contain a lot of elements and impurities but most importantly they are predominantly carbon.

Algordanza is a company that can be hired by the family of the deceased to take these ashes and turn them into a diamond. The diamond created can be any size as its size depends mainly on the time the ash spends in the growth phase of the Algordanza process.

It’s even possible for a loved one to have multiple diamonds made out of the ashes of a loved one. The whole process can last from anything between four months to eight months. Why does the Algordanza process take so long?

What Is the Process For Converting Human Ashes to Diamonds?

Algordanza’s method of turning human ashes into real diamonds involves three steps. In the first step, the ashes are chemically cleaned, which means that all substances other than carbon are removed.

The second step of the process involves an even more intense level of clean up for the ashes because diamonds can only be formed if the raw material is 99 percent carbon. In order to make the ashes as purely carbon as possible, a catalyst is mixed in and the mixture is put in a special device which pulls out the catalyst and many impurities along with it.

In the third and final step, the purified form of the ashes is put inside a specialised chamber which puts it under the required pressure and temperature for a considerable amount of time. The purified ashes first turn into graphite and then into diamonds!

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