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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Diamonds To Be An Open Water Swimmer's Best Friend

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Science Magazine reported that artificial diamonds with elements of nickel can be used as a temperature probe with unparalleled precision over time and space.

Imagine the possibilities in the open water world - even if the utilization of these diamonds are at least a few (or several) generations off in the future.

It would be totally cool to precisely know - and be able to objectively and automatically record on a universal scale - the water temperature when swimming in the open water.

Tiny diamond probes can measure temperatures ranging from 120°K to 900°K (–153°C to 627°C) — far beyond any scale that open water swimmers need. The probes can also detect temperature changes across distances as small as 5 μm (or 5 thousandths of a millimetre, 0.005 mm) and on timescales as short as 800 picoseconds (0.0000000008 seconds).

The finding describes the artificial diamonds with nickel as being extremely sensitive to temperature fluctuations. They emit a luminescent glow when struck by a pulse of laser light that can be used to calculate temperature. Simply put, as the temperature drops, the diamond glows for longer periods of time.

Co-researcher and spectroscopist Christophe Dujardin of the University of Lyon explains, “There are many kinds of impurities in diamond, and this particular defect was the most interesting. It’s more universal.”

If you are going to do some ice swimming, it will be very good to be precise about the water (and air) temperature. With these diamonds, all the data can be objectively obtained and documented.

Ryan Stramrood is pictured above swimming in ice water temperatures in Antartica.

Copyright © 2015 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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