Melting of Diamond at High Pressure

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Science  14 Dec 1990:
Vol. 250, Issue 4987, pp. 1547-1549
DOI: 10.1126/science.250.4987.1547


Melting of diamond at high pressure and the properties of liquid carbon at pressures greater than 1 megabar were investigated with a first-principles molecular dynamics technique. The results indicate an increase of the diamond melting temperature with pressure, which is opposite to the behavior of silicon and germanium. This is contrary to long-held assumptions, but agrees with recent experiments, and has important implications for geology and astrophysics. As is the case for the solid phase of carbon at low temperature, which changes greatly with pressure from graphite to diamond, the structural and bonding properties of liquid carbon vary strongly with pressure.