Properties of Matter

Strained and plastic diamonds

Stories from Physics for 11-14 14-16 IOP RESOURCES

Whilst macroscopic diamonds cannot undergo large strains without breaking, researchers have manufactured diamond nanoneedles that can experience strains of up to 9% without shattering. This property allows the nanoneedles to be bent at right angles, a deformation that would be impossible with macroscopic diamonds.

In the high temperatures and pressures within the Earth, diamonds can undergo plastic deformation, causing vacancy clusters within the crystal lattice. Such dislocations can give rise to brown and pink coloured diamonds.


appears in the relation ε=Δx/x E=σ/ε
can be represented by Stress-Strain Graphs
Limit Less Campaign

Support our manifesto for change

The IOP wants to support young people to fulfil their potential by doing physics. Please sign the manifesto today so that we can show our politicians there is widespread support for improving equity and inclusion across the education sector.

Sign today