The Physics
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Resistivity of Carbon, Diamond

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Bibliographic Entry Result
(w/surrounding text)
Halliday, Resnick and Walker. Fifth Edition of Fundamentals of Physics Extended. New York: Wiley, 1997. "Insulator Diamond = 1016 Ω·m" 1016 Ω·m
Pierson, H.O. Handbook of Carbon, Graphite, Diamond and Fullerenes - Properties, Processing and Applications. William Andrew Publishing/Noyes, 2004.
Resistivity, Ω·m
Type I and most Type IIa 1018
Type IIb 103-105
1018 Ω·m
Beck, Dr. Chris and Ahmed, Dr. Mahsood. Diamond - Chemically Vapour Deposited Diamond. Azom, 2004.
Material Thermal Conductivity
Electrical Resistivity
(Ω cm)
Diamond 2000 1 × 1014 110
1016 Ω·m
Lide, David R. Handbook of Chemistry and Physics, 75th Edition. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 1985.
Material Resistivity Ω·m
Diamond 2.7
2.7 Ω·m
May, Paul W. CVD Diamond - a new Technology for the Future? School of Chemistry Research Server, University of Bristol, 1995. "Good electrical insulator (room temperature resistivity ~1016 Ω·cm" 1018 Ω·m

Diamond is one of the natural allotropes of carbon. Diamond is the strongest known material. It has the highest thermal conductivity, 2000 W/m·K. It is very resistant to chemical corrosion. Diamonds have high electrical resistivity. Resistivity is a measure of how strongly a material opposes the flow of electric current. It can be expressed as…

ρ = RA/ℓ


ρ = resistivity
R = resistance
A = cross sectional area
ℓ = length

The units for resistivity is ohm·meters (Ω·m).It is temperature dependent.At room temperature, diamond is a good insulator with a resistivity of 1 × 1018 Ω·m. There are four diamond types: type Ia, Ib, IIa, and IIb.Type Ia, Ib, and IIa usually have a resistivity of 1 × 1018 Ω·m.Type IIb has a resistivity of 1-105 Ω·m.They are natural diamonds, but Type IIa is the purest one.

Kerry Mae Remulla -- 2004

Bibliographic Entry Result
(w/surrounding text)
Pastor-Moreno, Gustavo. Electrochemical Applications of CVD Diamond. University of Bristol. July 2002. "Resistivity of undoped diamond ~1016 Ω·cm" ~1018 Ω·m
Saada, David. Diamond and graphite properties. Technion - Israel Institute of Technology - טכניון. "Diamond is an insulator at room temperature, with a resistivity larger than 1012 Ω·cm" ~1014 Ω·m
Astronomy Knowledge Base - Carbon. Fact Guru. University of Ottawa. "has electrical resistivity 1 × 1011 Ω m for diamond at 293 K" 1011 Ω·m
Berman, R. Physical Properties of a Diamond. Northern Ireland: Oxford, 1965: 9. "The type IIb property is present to a varying extent and there is probably range from insulating diamonds, whose resistance at room temperature is 5 × 1014 Ω·cm" 5 × 1016 Ω·m
May, Paul W. Some Important Properties of Diamond. CVD Diamond - a new Technology for the Future. University of Bristol. 1995.
Property Value Units
Resistivity 1013–1016 Ω cm
1015-1018 Ω·m

Most people associate diamonds with the most precious brilliant transparent gemstone. The diamond is a natural crystalline substance. It is found naturally deep within the earth's surface. It forms deep in the earth's interior and is shot up to the surface by volcanoes. A diamond is the oldest thing you will ever own, it is almost three billion years old (2/3 the age of earth!). A diamond is carbon in its most concentrated form. It is a native element, and extremely pure.

A diamond has amazing strength and extraordinary properties. The diamond is transparent to ultraviolet, visible and infrared radiation This element has the hardest surface area, and even has the ability to slow light down to half its speed. When compared to any other material, the diamond is the least compressible, the stiffest, and has a negative electron affinity. Diamonds are good thermal conductors as well as good insulators.

The diamond also has a high electrical resistivity:1011 to 1018 Ω·m. In a diamond, every carbon atom shares and electron with each of four adjacent carbon atoms. This sharing forms the strongest known chemical link, a covalent bond. The bond it forms explains its high resistivity. As the bond becomes stronger, the resistance increases and its electric current decreases. It is the arrangement of the carbon atoms that give the diamond its amazing properties.

Sarah Fromentin -- 2004