Squeezing graphene produces ‘diamondene’
Diamonds are going 2-D. The superhard form of carbon can be forged in thin films known as diamondene, new evidence suggests. While graphite, the form of carbon found in pencils, can be made into atom-thick sheets known as graphene, scientists have struggled to create two-dimensional films of its relative, diamond.
When a pair of graphene sheets are squeezed to pressures around tens of thousands of times that of Earth’s atmosphere, the crystal structure appears to change, hinting that it has morphed from graphite to diamond. Physicist Luiz Gustavo Cançado of the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and colleagues report the new finding July 21 in Nature Communications.
“It’s the thinnest possible diamond,” says theoretical physicist Pavel Sorokin of the National University of Science and Technology MISiS in Moscow, who was not involved in the new