How Natural Diamonds Form

How Natural Diamonds are Formed 

Contrary to popular lore, diamonds are not made from coal. A more accurate way to describe naturally forming diamonds is to say that a specific set of carbon materials needs to be subjected to pressure around 725,000 pounds per square inch and heat at 2000-2200 degrees Fahrenheit before quickly forming into a diamond as we know it. 

Conditions that Create Diamonds

Diamonds require a specific environment in which to grow. They typically start their life about a hundred miles below the Earth’s upper mantle in sweltering heat and under an immense amount of pressure. With temperatures that no human or machine can withstand and the depth it would require to dig, scientists have had to recreate the conditions under which they believe all diamonds are formed through trial and error. What is known for sure is that diamonds are made up of bonded carbon atoms. This specific formation of atoms is what makes diamonds the strongest naturally made substance on Earth.

How Diamond Reach the Earth’s Surface

Because diamonds are formed so deeply beneath the Earth’s surface, it seems outrageous that we would be able to mine them at all. As previously stated, no technology can withstand the heat and pressure of the Earth’s mantle. So how do diamonds show up in mines? The key is that diamonds are formed very quickly, most likely in a matter of a few hours, and the formations can travel at 20-30 miles per hour. The diamonds that are found in mines have been brought up through cooled volcanic material called Kimberlite. Once at the surface, the diamond cools, locking its carbon atoms into place and preventing it from morphing into graphite. 

Diamond Formation

The time it takes to form diamonds has not been discovered. Scientists are still trying to determine whether the process happens as quickly as a few days or as long as a couple of millions of years. As with many other crystal formations, it is believed that it is not a continuous process. Even with the ability to grow diamonds within the lab, the details of how it happens below the surface still remains a mystery. Lab-grown diamonds require a catalyst, with some metal added to help with the diamond’s growth. However, those metals have not been found in the Earth’s upper mantle.

Why Shop for Loose Diamonds at BENARI JEWELERS?

BENARI JEWELERS has served the Delaware Valley and Philadelphia area in its fine jewelry and diamond needs for more than half a century. Our key to success is our impeccable customer service. With highly trained staff members, choosing a diamond has never been easier. We help guide you through the process, walking you through the four C’s, carat, cut, clarity, and color, and what the best options would be to suit your unique needs. We have showrooms in Exton and Newtown Square fully stocked with luxury jewelry and timepiece brands. Visit us in-store or contact us at to learn more. 


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