Good Morning all,
I subscribe to livescience.com and today found a very interesting
article about the unique crystal structure of Diamonds.
Diamond’s Structural Secrets Revealed
By Andrea Thompson
Sure, diamonds are shiny and sparkly, but their beauty may
ultimately come from their unique crystal structure, one
Toshikazu Sunada, of Japan’s Meiji University, conducted a
mathematical analysis of the crystal structure of diamond and
found that it has certain special properties, especially in its
In a crystal, atoms are packed in ordered, repeating patterns,
with the bonds between them holding them tightly together.
Crystals can be represented in models by points (representing
the atoms) connected by lines, or edges in particular patterns.
Two main patterns emerge in crystals: the pattern of edges
connecting the points (or of the bonds between atoms) and the
pattern of a network of connected edges and vertices that
repeats throughout the crystal.
Diamonds have two key properties that distinguish them from
other crystals. One is called "maximal symmetry"while other
crystals can be deformed in models to make them more symmetric,
Diamond also has a property similar to circles and spheres,
which look the same no matter which way you rotate them.
Similarly, a diamond crystal looks the same when viewed from the
direction of any edge.
Sunada discovered that out of an infinite universe of
mathematical crystals, only one other shares these two
properties with diamond, a theoretical model Sunada calls the
“The K_4 crystal looks no less beautiful than the diamond
crystal,” Sunada said, adding that though it is only theoretical
now, it could one day be found in nature or created.