A team of Harvard physicists believe they have successfully created metallic hydrogen, “Science” online reported Jan. 26. The feat was accomplished by subjecting liquid hydrogen to extreme cold and high pressure, Dr. Isaac Silvera, one of the team members said. The product, a single drop of reddish silver, is currently being held in place between the tips of two diamonds.
If the tiny drop of material is able to maintain its state when pressure is reduced and it is brought to room temperature, it will be deemed metastable. Scientist believe it could act as a superconductor.
The amount of pressure required to accomplish this breakthrough is about 4 million times that of atmospheric pressure, well beyond the pressure at the center of the earth.
The liquid form of hydrogen metal has been successfully created in the past. This liquid metallic hydrogen is thought to form the core of large planets like Jupiter.
As news spread of the achievement, other high-pressure physicists voiced skepticism. Some voiced doubt that the pressures needed to make metallic hydrogen had been successfully reached.