4.55 BILLION YEARS

Diamond From the Sky May Have Come From ‘Lost Planet,’ Study Says

Scientists have found that fragments of a meteorite, which crashed to Earth a decade ago, may have come from a “lost planet” in our solar system, a new study claims. The Almahata Sitta meteorite landed in the Nubian Desert in October 2008, and diamonds on the inside were formed by a proto-planet around 4.55 billion years ago, researchers have concluded. The study was conducted jointly by authors from Switzerland, Germany, and France. “We demonstrate that these large diamonds cannot be the result of a shock but rather of growth that has taken place within a planet,” author and planetary scientist Philippe Gillet reportedly told The Associated Press. The lost planet was possibly as big as Mercury or Mars, according to Gillet. “What we’re claiming here,” Gillet said, “is that we have in our hands a remnant of this first generation of planets that are missing today because they were destroyed or incorporated in a bigger planet.”