Diamond and graphite

In this chapter you will learn:

  1. What is Diamond?

  2. What is graphite?

Diamond and graphite

Diamond and graphite are different forms of carbon.

Diamond and graphite are examples of giant covalent structures.

In diamond, each carbon atom is strongly joined to four other carbon atoms by strong covalent bonds.

Diamond has a very high melting point.

Diamond does not conduct electricity.

Diamond is very hard and dense.

Diamond is used in jewellery and in cutting tools.


In graphite each carbon atom in a layer is strongly bonded to three other carbon atoms.

The carbon atoms form layers of hexagonal rings. There are no covalent bonds between the layers.

Graphite has delocalised electrons from each atom. These electrons are free to move between the layers in graphite.

Graphite can conduct electricity.

Graphite is soft and slippery. These qualities make graphite useful as a lubricant.

Graphite has a very high melting point.

graphite is a soft crystal.

Graphite is used in pencil, locks and as a lubricant.

Graphite is also useful for electrodes in batteries and for electrolysis.


Graphene is a single layer of graphite.

Graphene has a giant covalent structure.

Graphene has a very high melting points.

Graphene conducts electricity because it has delocalised electrons which can move along its surfaceare.