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Home Startups The Science Of Diamonds: A Rare Carat Lab-Grown Diamond And Its Authenticity

The Science Of Diamonds: A Rare Carat Lab-Grown Diamond And Its Authenticity

by James Musoba
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There are five basic elements needed to create most any kind of stone, including diamonds. These are carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, sodium and iron.

When we talk about diamond composition, what we’re really talking about is how much of each element you have in relation to one another. More highly concentrated (higher proportions) of these four non-diamond atoms makes up the structure of the diamond, and therefore it is considered more valuable.

Are lab grown diamonds real diamonds? The proportion of carbon in a diamond can vary quite a bit, making it difficult to determine exactly where your diamond fits into the spectrum of value. This is because there is no hard and fast rule for defining “more or less” carbon content. It all depends on the cut, color and clarity.

Color does not affect the price of a diamond as much as people think. Colorless stones are actually the most expensive due to the higher demand they pose. Clarity also doesn’t play a very big part in determining pricing.

It’s important to know that even if a diamond has an imperfection like a cloudy piece or something stuck in it, it will still be valued at its true cost per carats.

Diamonds are a carbon-based gem

Like all other gems, diamonds come from natural deposits of minerals that contain some proportion of diamond. These mineral sources include rivers, oceans, volcanoes, and you name it!

Most people know that diamonds form when liquid water meets pure methane gas, but few realize that this process is very limited in nature. In fact, there’s only one place in the world where you can find large amounts of both liquids and gases — volcanic eruptions!

When a volcano erupts, temperatures rise and fluids (liquids or gasses) move around under enormous pressure. This creates conditions favorable for the growth of diamonds. However, because they occur so rarely, most geologists agree that it would take at least 10 million years for enough volcanic activity to create an adequate supply of diamonds.

Carats are usually not more than 100, and sometimes much less than 50. Because of this, even though we talk about “diamonds” being abundant, there isn’t really such a thing as a lot of diamonds.

There are different types of diamonds

Like color, there are three main categories for diamond shape. These include round, square, and other, such as octagonal or emerald. And just like colors of gems, numbers of diamonds in each category vary depending on who you ask!

Some experts believe that only 5% to 10% of all diamonds are set with non-traditional shapes. As we will see in this article, however, lab grown diamonds are not shaped by nature and do not have any internal structure.

This means they can’t be categorized into one style or another, making them much less valuable than their proportionally shaped counterparts.

However, due to their unique appearance, some people think they look more expensive. This is why some people consider them fake or plastic. It is important to know what makes an authentic carat weight diamond before buying one.

How are diamonds formed?

Almost 4 billion years ago, when our planet was only one fifth its current size, it exploded! This is called accretion. As matter cooled down, solid crystals formed.

Diamonds can be thought of as very pure carbon. They are so reflective because they contain no other elements that could interfere with this property.

When pressure and temperature increase during the process of diamond formation, atoms move around more easily, which makes the diamond even brighter. That’s why heavier or larger stones are considered to have higher value.

There you have it! That is all there is to know about how diamonds form. It is an interesting science!

If you like learning complex concepts then you should consider becoming an expert in materials science. Materials scientists study what happens to substances when you use them and how they work under different conditions.

Diamonds are rare

Only about 1% of all diamonds that come to market are ever actually cut into a shape we recognize as a diamond. These shaped or cut stones are referred to as “prismatic” or “cat eye” diamonds because they have a very thin, tall top and wider bottom.

The reason only 1% of diamonds are cut into this style is simply cost. To do so costs more money, which means most diamonds you see in jewelry stores are not really diamonds at all but rather cubic zirconia (CZ) — a cheaper imitation stone.

Some CZs look and feel real, though. They can be sold for good money if people believe them to be true diamonds. Cat eyes, however, cannot. This makes these thinner top diamonds almost impossible to sell.

Because of this, experts say it is nearly impossible to tell whether or not a given cat eye diamond is indeed a natural gemstone with no man made components.

There is one way to know for sure though, and that is by X-ray fluorescence (XRF). An XRF test uses special equipment to identify trace elements within a material. In this case, the element would be carbon. If the sample does not contain any carbon then it is not a diamond.

The origin of diamond mines

Rare Carat diamonds Most come from natural geological processes. As crystals form, they can get trapped in cracks or spaces as minerals seep into the area. Over time, other minerals may grow around the first crystal to create an even more complex structure.

When enough time has passed, geologists examine the stones to determine if they have undergone chemical changes due to exposure to air or water. This is what determines whether a stone is called “fused” or not — if it has never been exposed to oxygen then it is considered a non-fusion stone like emeralds.

If however, the stone has experienced at least some oxidation (taking away some of its luster) then it becomes less valuable since you cannot use that polished surface for a setting. The setting would no longer hold up!

Some people will also look into the atomic number value of each element within the stone to confirm this. For instance, carbon atoms are very stable so most diamonds contain little to no variations in their number. However, boron and silicon tend to stick to each other so there could be an increase in those numbers.

As with all things gem related, prices are influenced by both demand and supply. If a large amount of a specific diamond comes onto the market, thus lowering demand, then it will go down in price.

Diamonds are expensive

As we discussed, diamonds come with a lot of fanfare and hype. They are known to be beautiful, durable, and spectacularly elegant. But what people may not know is that diamond prices are influenced by their internal structure.

The color and luster of a diamond is due to two things: its surface and what’s inside. The more imperfections there are in the inner structure, the brighter and higher reflecting the light will be.

However, as you can imagine, producing large amounts of flawless white or black stones is very cost effective. So most diamonds have a mixture of both. This is why professional gemologists and jewelry experts cannot always tell if a stone is authentic or not.

It is extremely difficult to produce a high quality brown or yellow diamond because it would require starting with a non-diamond center material and then overworking the outside to look like melted down carbon. Both of these processes could damage the interior so they are avoided when possible.

That is why you will almost never see a completely natural looking dark colored diamond. Even those who claim to cut costs omit the process of adding external content to achieve darkness.

Authentication of diamonds

There are several different ways to authenticate a diamond, with most requiring you to have access to the diamond being authenticated. Some methods use x-rays or spectroscopy to determine what elements are in the stone, while others look at how reflective the diamond is or whether it has been treated for its appearance.

Many people get confused about where exactly certified diamonds come from. More and more jewelry stores are trying to be as authentic as possible by only buying certified stones. Luckily, there are some easy ways to tell if a non-certified diamond was manufactured in a real facility.

There are two main types of facilities that cut and polish diamonds: professional laboratories and private factories. Only professional labs can test quality and authenticity of the gemstone, so they are the source of almost all certified diamonds. Private factories cannot conduct quality checks, so they may put in extra care to make the stone seem better. This is why many fake diamonds do not break down when rubbed or struck.

Shop smartly! Read up on which brands are worth your money and keep an eye out for scam reviews. Just because something is cheap does not mean it is good, read your material carefully before investing.

Tell them what it is

Recent developments in carat-scale technology have allowed for high quality, one-of-a-kind diamonds to be manufactured or “grown” by diamond mining companies.

These so called lusterless (or white) diamonds are still made of pure carbon, but they do not contain any internal reflections or flashes of light when illuminated.

This feature makes them seem more expensive than they really are – the price depends mostly on the size of the stone!

A 1 ct. stone would cost the same as a 2 ct. stone because there are less expensive ways to achieve this look. By having fewer reflecting surfaces, people perceive the gem to be heavier and more valuable.

However, due to their lack of clarity, these stones can be difficult to identify as real diamonds under UV illumination. This is why most professionals cannot confirm whether or not a lusterless diamond is indeed a true diamond.

It is also important to note that although very pretty, lusterless diamonds may be marketed as fake diamonds. As we will see, there are some things that can help determine if a diamond is authentic.

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