Ocean of Liquid Diamond on Neptune

Those looking for a way to fund future expeditions to the planet Neptune will be surprised by the potential for wealth theorized to be on the surface of planet Neptune.  Oceans of diamonds topped by massive “diamond icebergs,” if mined could bring in untold hundreds of trillions for anyone with the ingenuity to bring them back to Earth.  An entire world of jewels sounds like a tall tale, and it may be the tallest treasure tale ever told.  It’s also a claim based in science.

Diamond is the hardest natural substance known to man, and therefore theoretically would be an invaluable resource to anyone for not only precious jewels but for future building materials.  If these massive oceans of diamond truly exist, then imagine a sphere of diamond-like material suspended around Earth protecting it from potential collisions with asteroids and solar flares, while regulating global warming through an advanced system of filters and shades traveling across the surface.  If that’s too ambitious, the sheer mining aspect of the material would be value enough.  One ounce of diamond is worth over $3 million, and likely more than that with price controls placed on the jewels.

The discovery was not one made by a floating observer type spacecraft, but rather in a lab on Earth.  Because of the pressure requirements for diamonds to melt and not become graphite, it was unknown what temperature diamonds finally became liquid until recently when scientists increased the pressure to somewhere around 40 million times Earth’s gravity and fired lasers at 50 million degrees at the diamonds, and for the first time met with success.  In addition, they found that diamonds float when on a bed of diamond in much the same way that ice chunks will float to the top of a glass of water.  The study left researchers astounded.

So as the information went around, the researchers took the information a step further.  What conditions would be required for this sort of transformation to take place?  They found the most likely candidate would be incredibly high temperatures and incredibly high gravity.  Where do these conditions exist?  The most likely candidate is the mysterious gaseous planet Neptune, where very favorable conditions exist for an ocean of liquid diamond.

So what would it take to extract this material?  Considering the gravitational pull of Neptune is so great that even being near the planet would result in immediate death, it doesn’t seem a mining operation will be feasible with current propulsion systems, but a future generation a few hundred years from now could in theory find a way to break through Neptune’s unforgiving atmosphere and leave with a precious cargo in tow the likes of which no one nation has ever seen.  Imagine a single diamond weighing no less than two Earth tons, scooped up from the ocean depths and placed on the back of a ship.  The cargo would be so valuable, it would be worth more than all of Earth’s economies combined.  It would actually work to deflate its own value as its very presence would drive demand way down.