Sumiya, H., Irifune, T., Kurio, A. et al. Journal of Materials Science (2004) 39: 445. doi:10.1023/B:JMSC.0000011496.15996.44
Recently, ultra-hard polycrystalline diamond was synthesized from graphite by direct conversion under static high pressure. This paper describes the microstructure features of thus formed polycrystalline diamond. Transmission electron microscopy and electron diffraction have revealed that the polycrystalline diamond has a mixed texture of a homogeneous fine structure and a lamellar structure. The former structure consists of fine-grained diamond particles of several tens of nanometers across, which are randomly oriented. The latter structure has bending diamond layers, which may reflect deformed shapes of locally layered graphite of starting material. The experimental results suggest that diamond particles in the homogeneous fine structure are transformed from graphite in the diffusion process, while diamond layers in the lamellar structure are formed in the martensitic process from graphite via the hexagonal diamond phase. It is also noted that significant grain growth occurred at a high temperature of ∼2700°C, and the lamellar structure was segmentalized to form new grain boundaries.