Top Social

Our Sponsors

Diamonds: The Promise of An Eternity

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Diamonds are one of the most expensive pieces of stones in the world and there are plenty of reasons that lead to this exclusivity. Diamond is known to be the hardest substance and it is also the only gem made of entirely a single element- carbon. 99.95% of a diamond is composed of the element carbon.
The remaining includes a combination of one or more trace elements which do not form an essential part of the diamond’s chemistry. However, the presence of these trace elements can affect the color of the shape of the crystal as well. Nothing can deny the uniqueness and rarity that diamonds hold in the mineral kingdom.

The identity of diamond is from the fact that it is only formed under high pressure and temperature conditions such as the one obtained after a specific depth range beneath the surface of the earth. The crystal structure of this element is isometric and hence all the carbon atoms are bonded the same way in all possible directions. Graphite is another carbon-based element that has stark contrasting nature when compared to diamond. This is why the process of formation is considered integral.
These factors and unique conditions of formations are the factors that make diamonds, unlike any other mineral. The special combination of crystal structure, chemical composition, and formation process are the primary things that make this element extraordinary, expensive and rare.

Synthetic or lab-grown diamonds   
     
An alternative for the rare and expensive element is the synthetic diamonds or cultured diamonds. They are grown in a controlled environment such as a laboratory with the help of advanced technological processes that mimic the original formation conditions of the stone when it is formed naturally on the earth’s mantle.
The atomic structure imitates the arrangement in the natural structure of diamonds. They visibly and physically exhibit the same properties as the naturally formed diamond. The chemical and optical properties are the same as well, making it hard to distinguish between the two.



How to create them?

Lab-grown diamonds can be created in various methods. One of them is using the carbon seed of a pre-existing diamond. A special deposition process involving high pressure and temperature that mimics the formation process is followed. As explained earlier, trace elements can influence the color factor of the diamond.

In the case of lab-grown diamonds, these trace elements can be input in order to gain a specific color. This is also the factor that can help experts determine if a diamond is cultured or formed naturally. The minor differences in the trace elements or crystal growth can differentiate between the two and can only be found with the help of special equipment. The colorless nature of stones can also be gained by using trace elements that give out a tinge of yellow or white.
Another advantage when it comes to engineered diamonds is the fact that they cost a lot lesser than the authentic version. They are also available in a lot of vivid colors that are considered extremely rare for naturally formed diamonds. However, there are plenty of myths that surround cultured diamonds and thus preventing you from getting those for your own engagement.

Misconception

Untrue factors such as they differ visibly differ from mined diamonds can prevent you from choosing this version. They are also certified similar to the certification process followed by mined diamonds. They can differ in quality based on the way they are formed.
They may be referred to as synthetic diamonds, but are composed of 100% carbon with a few synthetic traces. Hence the purity factor is the same for both kinds of diamonds and should not be a concern while you are searching for the perfect stone to gift your better half.

Obtaining naturally formed diamonds involve the destruction of a particular region with intense mining in order to find the stones. The process involves risking the biodiversity of the region in addition to destroying the top layer of the soil. Using the engineered version of diamonds is hence more eco-friendly as it does not involve any destruction of the environment and impact is minimal.
 Another misconception is regarding their durability. Synthetic diamonds are equally everlasting similar to how mined ones are and can be passed down generations and proudly owned as a family heirloom. These diamonds are also graded according to the four Cs- Cut, color, carat and clarity. These four factors determine the value of the diamond and are the system used to determine the value of the stone for years.



Mined diamonds Vs Cultured diamonds

Diamonds created in a lab display the same optical, chemical and physical properties as mined diamonds. They also exhibit the same luster and multiple reflection properties that keep diamond unique. The trace elements are one of the few factors that stay different between mined and cultured diamonds. Both the categories come bearing certification. In case of cultured diamonds, this is regarding the gem certification that states that they are laboratory grown.
Only highly specialized tests can differentiate between the two kinds of diamonds. In fact, the only solid difference between mined and cultured diamonds is regarding their origin. Buyers can be unsure about cultured diamonds, but it is essential to know they symbolize the same uniqueness that mined ones do, without creating ecological damage or leaving a bigger dent on your savings.

Diamond Simulants

Another important factor to understand is the existence of diamond simulants and how they differ from diamonds, both naturally formed and cultured. These compounds are cubic zirconia, moissanite or other variants that look visibly similar to diamonds but lack true carbon crystal formation. They do not have the same optical, physical and chemical properties and sell at a much lower price than both types of diamonds. They can also easily be distinguished from original diamonds by using just the naked eye.

This can be furthered confirmed using a handheld diamond tester that differentiates diamonds from stimulants on the basis of thermal conductivity. Experienced gemologists can distinguish between the two using the refractive properties as well. Diamonds are single refractive while stimulants are double refractive.

  
Post Comment
Post a Comment