Interstellar Dust and Diamonds


NONE of the classical models for the interstellar dust grains fit in with all the modern observations. Pure graphite particles produce insufficient extinction in the far ultraviolet1. The strong absorption band in the infrared predicted for ice or ice-coated graphite particles is not observed2. Neither type of particle has the combined properties of high albedo and nearly isotropic phase function needed to fit the observations of the diffuse galactic radiation3. These difficulties would be eliminated if the dust grains contain an abundant element in an allotropic form not considered previously: carbon in the form of diamond.

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SASLAW, W., GAUSTAD, J. Interstellar Dust and Diamonds. Nature 221, 160–162 (1969).

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