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How to Make Diamonds?
Imitation diamonds/diamond simulants have acquired a massive following in recent years because they are affordable and do the job perfectly of providing the same appearance of diamonds minus the cost. We’re sure that many of you want to know how to make diamonds, including the HPHT diamond, and some may even ask – are lab-grown diamonds real?
What are Man-Made Diamonds?
Lab diamonds or man-made diamonds are made from cores or seeds of existing diamonds. Man-made diamonds are manufactured through various processes that involve extreme pressure, high levels of heat, or deposition processes that gradually create the diamonds from continuous layering. The CVD method of making diamonds is the closest you can get to the natural processes that make diamonds many kilometers into the earth.
Some CVD diamonds will likely still undergo different processes to improve their appearance, such as heat treatment for modifying the color and pressuring the diamonds.
Lab-grown diamonds can be modified by adding trace amounts of elements or minerals that will change color once the temperature rises.
Cubic zirconia is a colorless, man-made gemstone that is derived from zirconium dioxide. While it can occur naturally in regular deposition sites of rocks, it is mostly synthetically created under laboratory conditions. Cubic zirconia is not a man-made diamond but rather a simulant or something that copies the appearance of a diamond because they are more affordable.
Moissanite is a kind of silicon carbide formation that is also used as a simulant of a diamond. Moissanite is also lab-grown (the majority of it), so if you see it out in any department store or jewelry store, you are looking at the synthetic kind. Synthetic does not mean fake in this situation – it just means that it was synthesized scientifically for the market. Moissanite is a very convincing simulant, making it popular in the engagement ring and wedding ring market.
What is the Difference Between Lab-Grown Diamonds and Diamond Simulants?
Lab-grown diamonds are incomparable to diamond simulants. A synthetic diamond is chemically stable and also chemically identical to diamonds mined deep in the earth.
They are natural diamonds, and if you look at the crystalline structure of man-made diamonds, they are also identical to the crystalline structure of harvested diamonds.
They offer the same level of sparkle and brilliance, but they won’t hurt your wallet that much. Of course, man-made diamonds came to be because people are looking for cheaper alternatives to natural diamonds. They continue to be very popular, and there won’t be any problems with the supply any time soon because of the high demand.
It is nearly impossible to tell a natural diamond and a synthetic diamond apart. However, for truthfulness, man-made diamonds are often inscribed with very tiny marks that identify them by the manufacturer.
These marks are visible only when you have the right level of magnification. The girdle, or the widest part of the diamond, is also often inscribed with additional information about the manufacturing of the synthetic diamond.
Man-made diamonds should never be confused with diamond simulants. Diamond simulants have different chemical compositions, and they’re not identical gemstones. They’re not synthetic diamonds but rather crystals that have the same general look and brilliance like diamonds.
Diamond is comprised of carbon crystals, while simulants are not. This is why diamond simulants are sold for much lower prices. It’s not a bad idea to buy diamond simulants, especially if you want to be more practical and you don’t want to dip in too much with your savings.
How to Grow Diamonds in a Laboratory?
There are two main methods of growing diamonds in a laboratory.
The first method is called the HPHT, which stands for High Pressure / High Temperature. This method is widely touted in different regions, from the US, Asia, Sweden, and even Russia.
HPHT is popular among diamond manufacturers because it can produce man-made diamonds in a wide variety of colors. Should the colors be less desirable, they can be changed or intensified with the help of heat treatment or irradiation.
The HPHT method’s refinements now allow manufacturers to create diamonds in virtually any color needed, which was unheard of for decades because diamonds are very demanding minerals, owing to their origin.
The second method for creating diamonds is chemical vapor deposition. CVD diamonds often reach up to three carats, and the internal inclusions are standard as well.
Can you quickly tell if the diamond in front of you is of the CVD type? Yes. The internal inclusions of CVD diamonds are patterned – they have a strain pattern that does not occur in natural diamonds.
They also tend to have a strong fluorescence (reddish), and they do not possess the natural capeline at 415 nm. This can be found in their absorption spectrum. CVD diamonds have a strong line present at 737 nm.
Are Lab-Created Diamonds Real? How Much Do They Cost?
Lab-created diamonds are most definitely the real thing, and probably the only thing that is holding back people from buying synthetic diamonds is the term synthetic. Again, we have to point out that synthetic diamonds are natural diamonds. The only difference is we have the technology now to create diamonds in a much shorter period, rather than millions of years of natural deposition.
Synthetic diamonds are cheaper than natural ones – you can buy over a carat at just $2,540. The attitude of the jewelry trading world is also changing. Before, synthetic diamonds were looked down upon by big brands. But when they realized that synthetic diamonds could be just as profitable as the real ones, they began stocking their displays with synthetic diamonds.
The savings with synthetic diamonds are genuine, so better think twice if you avoid these just because they have the term synthetic added to their name.
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