Jupiter's Diamond Core

from 2010: Odyssey Two (1982) by Arthur C. ClarkeRating: 3.8     (13 ratings)

He had almost reached the center of the planet, but Jupiter had one more surprise in store. The thick shell of metallic yet still fluid hydrogen ended abruptly. At last, there was a solid surface, sixty thousand kilometers down.
For ages, the carbon baked out of the chemical reactions far above had been drifting down toward the center of the planet. There it had gathered, crystallizing at a pressure of millions of atmospheres. and there, by one of Nature's supreme jests, was something very precious to mankind.
The core of Jupiter, forever beyond human reach, was a diamond as big as the Earth.

- Arthur C. Clarke

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2010: Odyssey Two