“Diamond Rain,” might sound like a newly discovered Prince track. In actuality, it’s a phenomenon scientists believe is occurring on at least two of our solar system’s planets. Neptune and Uranus have hydrocarbon-filled atmospheres, which suggest this weird phenomenon.
These planets have layers of different temperatures and pressures. Diamond rain is thought to occur 5,000 miles (8,000 km) below each planet’s surface, in what’s called the intermediate zone.
Carbon from the center of these planets rises up into the atmosphere. The extremely high pressure in the intermediate zone crushes the carbon and the hydrogen together, creating hydrocarbon gas and creating a diamond. The diamond floats gently down to the surface below.