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Everything you need to know about lab-grown diamonds 2023.

lab-grown diamond

What are lab-grown diamonds?

Lab-grown diamonds are diamonds that are created in a laboratory using advanced technology that replicates the process by which diamonds form on earth. They are chemically, physically, and optically identical to natural diamonds and are considered to be genuine diamonds.

There are two main methods for creating lab-grown diamonds: high-pressure high-temperature (HPHT) and chemical vapor deposition (CVD). HPHT involves recreating the high pressures and temperatures that exist deep within the earth, while CVD involves using a chemical reaction to deposit a thin layer of carbon atoms onto a substrate, which is then transformed into a diamond crystal.

Lab-grown diamonds are often referred to as “synthetic” diamonds, but this term is not entirely accurate as they are not fake or imitation diamonds. They are real diamonds that have simply been created in a laboratory rather than mined from the earth. Lab-grown diamonds have gained popularity in recent years as an alternative to natural diamonds, as they are often less expensive and more environmentally friendly to produce.

lab-grown diamond

Are lab-grown diamonds real?

Yes, lab-grown diamonds are real diamonds. They are chemically, physically, and optically identical to natural diamonds and are considered to be genuine diamonds. They are just as real as diamonds that are mined from the earth. They have shape, size, color, and clarity grades, just like Natural Diamonds. Both Natural and Lab Grown Diamonds have the same physical and chemical properties and both come with diamond certifications.

Lab-grown diamonds vs natural diamonds

There are several key differences between lab-grown diamonds and natural diamonds:

  • Origin: Natural diamonds are formed in the earth over millions of years, while lab-grown diamonds are created in a laboratory using advanced technology.
  • Cost: Lab-grown diamonds are typically less expensive than natural diamonds of similar quality. This is because they are produced in a controlled environment and do not require the extensive mining and processing that natural diamonds do.
  • Environmental impact: The process of mining and extracting natural diamonds can have a significant environmental impact, including land degradation, water pollution, and carbon emissions. In contrast, lab-grown diamonds are produced in a laboratory using advanced technology, which has a much lower environmental impact.
  • Quality: Lab-grown diamonds and natural diamonds are chemically, physically, and optically identical, and there is no difference in quality between the two. However, lab-grown diamonds may be more consistently high quality due to the controlled laboratory environment in which they are produced.
  • Availability: Natural diamonds are a finite resource and may not be available in large quantities or certain sizes and shapes. Lab-grown diamonds can be produced in a variety of sizes and shapes and are not limited by the availability of natural diamonds.

Ultimately, the choice between a lab-grown diamond and a natural diamond is a personal one and depends on individual preferences and priorities.

Methods used in production

There are two main methods for creating lab-grown diamonds: high-pressure high-temperature (HPHT) and chemical vapor deposition (CVD).

  • High-pressure high-temperature (HPHT): This method involves recreating the high pressures and temperatures that exist deep within the earth. A small seed crystal of a diamond is placed in a sealed chamber and subjected to extremely high pressures (around 5 gigapascals) and temperatures (around 1,500 to 1,700 degrees Celsius). Under these conditions, the carbon atoms in the seed crystal rearrange themselves and form a diamond crystal.
  • Chemical vapor deposition (CVD): This method involves using a chemical reaction to deposit a thin layer of carbon atoms onto a substrate, which are then transformed into a diamond crystal. The substrate is placed in a sealed chamber and a mixture of gases is introduced, which includes a hydrocarbon gas (such as methane) and a chemical catalyst. The gases are ignited and a plasma is created, which decomposes the hydrocarbon gas and deposits a layer of carbon atoms onto the substrate. The carbon atoms then spontaneously arrange themselves into a diamond crystal structure as they cool.

Both of these methods produce diamonds that are chemically, physically, and optically identical to natural diamonds and are considered to be genuine diamonds.

Pros of Buying a Lab-Grown Diamond

There are several potential advantages to buying a lab-grown diamond:

Cost: Lab-grown diamonds are typically less expensive than natural diamonds of similar quality. This is because they are produced in a controlled environment and do not require the extensive mining and processing that natural diamonds do.

Environmental impact: The process of mining and extracting natural diamonds can have a significant environmental impact, including land degradation, water pollution, and carbon emissions. In contrast, lab-grown diamonds are produced in a laboratory using advanced technology, which has a much lower environmental impact.

Quality: Lab-grown diamonds and natural diamonds are chemically, physically, and optically identical, and there is no difference in quality between the two. However, lab-grown diamonds may be more consistently high quality due to the controlled laboratory environment in which they are produced.

Availability: Natural diamonds are a finite resource and may not be available in large quantities or in certain sizes and shapes. Lab-grown diamonds can be produced in a variety of sizes and shapes and are not limited by the availability of natural diamonds.

Customization: Lab-grown diamonds can be produced in a variety of sizes and shapes, allowing for more customization options.

Ultimately, the decision to buy a lab-grown diamond versus a natural diamond is a personal one and depends on individual preferences and priorities.

GIA Certified Lab Created Diamonds and IGI Certification

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and the International Gemological Institute (IGI) are both respected organizations that certify diamonds and other gemstones. Both organizations offer certification for lab-grown diamonds.

GIA certification for lab-grown diamonds involves evaluating the diamond’s physical and optical properties, including its size, shape, color, and clarity. The GIA uses standardized grading scales to assess these properties and issues a report that includes a detailed description of the diamond’s characteristics. GIA certification is widely recognized as a reliable and unbiased evaluation of a diamond’s quality.

IGI certification for lab-grown diamonds also involves evaluating the diamond’s physical and optical properties, including its size, shape, color, and clarity. The IGI uses standardized grading scales to assess these properties and issues a report that includes a detailed description of the diamond’s characteristics. IGI certification is also widely recognized as a reliable and unbiased evaluation of a diamond’s quality.

Both GIA and IGI certifications can provide valuable information about a lab-grown diamond and can help buyers make informed decisions when purchasing a diamond. It is important to note that certification does not guarantee the quality or value of a diamond, but it can provide valuable insights and help buyers compare diamonds.

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