Have you ever heard about the lab created diamonds? If
yes, then you need to strengthen your knowledge on the
lab made vs natural diamonds. If
no, there is need for you to know what the lab made diamonds are, their
features and other required details.
Man created diamond is also the diamond we know but the major difference is the fact that the it is not natural. It is Artificial / man-made.
I promise at the end of this article, you will not only understand what these diamonds are, you will also thank me for writing on this.
This article will explain what Lab made diamonds are, the process of growing them, the benefits, properties, available colors; their pricing, features, shape and colors.
To start with, let's understand the term Lab made diamond.
What are Lab Grown Diamonds?
Man created diamonds are diamonds that are grown in the lab. Lab created diamonds can also be called Man Made diamond or Synthetic diamond. There are usually pure carbon diamonds that are grown under highly-controlled laboratory condition that awakens the natural growing of the earth above the ground.
The diamonds that will result from this are usually physically, chemically and optically similar to the natural diamonds that are mined. In short they look like real wholesale diamonds.
Synthetic diamonds have been in the experimentation phase for hundreds of years and the research became a success in the last few decades. The experiment is still ongoing because the goal is to get diamonds that are better than the natural diamonds mined from the earth in terms of physical, chemical and optical structure.
From another different point of view, artificial diamonds can also be seen as diamonds that are engineered and cultured under controlled environment and unique technological process that mimics the natural process required for diamond formation under the earth.
These diamonds are in such a way that it has the same characteristics as the natural diamond crystal structure.
From the short text above on what lab made diamonds are, emphasis was laid on the fact that they requires undergoing processes. For this reason, it is important we highlight the process of growing them.
The process of growing lab diamonds include;
- Chemical vapor deposition
- High pressure, high temperature
THE PROCESS OF LAB CREATED DIAMOND
Man-made diamonds are made in such as way that all you need to start the process is just a carbon seed. To start with, the engineered diamonds are made by placing a "seed" into a chamber of extreme heat, pressure and special deposition process. The chamber of extreme heat, pressure and special deposition process is just to mimic the natural process of diamond formation.
The mad made diamond is formed when small amount of known amount of trace element is available during the process of growing the diamond similar to the way it happens naturally.
The major process required is the Crystallization. Crystallization allows the diamond seed grow and become matured in six to ten weeks before cut and polish is done. After which it is certified by renowned and certified by earth mined diamond certification lab. The certification is to know if the man-made lab has the chemical, physical and optical characteristics of the natural diamond.
Later in the article, we will discuss some techniques that are widely used for making synthetic diamonds.
The diamond can then be polished to have fancy colored diamonds. In both the polished/colored and white man made diamond, the composition of the trace element usually have slight differences from the naturally mined diamond. This little difference can only be detected using specialized equipment’s that have the capability of detecting those minor differences in the growth of crystal and trace element.
You can always get lab made or lab grown diamonds in different colors just the way you can get colored natural diamonds (colored natural diamonds are always very rare in nature).
The following combinations of techniques are most commonly used by laboratories to make synthetic diamonds:
You may wonder why there is need to make diamonds synthetically since it is available naturally. This part of the article will give you reasons why the Lab made diamonds are good. Let’s look at the benefits of the man-made diamonds.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF MAN MADE DIAMOND
- The first and most important benefit of
man made diamond is that the diamonds are affordable and conflict free.
- The beauty of Lab made diamond is
- Man-made diamonds have good diamond clarity,
good color, excellent cut and also good carat size. The Man made diamond have
different colors ranging from white to yellow, to green to pink and blue.
- Man made diamond are of good quality
; Depending on the type, a good one (e.g. Type IIa) have characteristics
similar to the purest form of natural diamond.
value for less
; this is one of the major benefits of
the man created diamond. Diamond being the most precious resources is very
expensive and lab grown diamond will only cost you about 50% of the cost needed
to get natural diamond.
unlike the naturally mined diamonds that affects the native communities and
leaves environment degraded, these diamonds are conflict free because
they are cultured, treated and cut in controlled laboratory environment.
- Looking at this point critically, to mine natural diamonds, hundreds of hectares of land is being disturbed, excessive emission of criteria pollutants like carbon, and other greenhouse gases which affect the air quality too. For every carat of diamond mined, approximately 0.000091 hectares of land is used and over 126 gallons of water is needed while for lab made diamonds a carat will require 18.5 liters of water and 0.00000071 hectares of land.
Major properties of the lab made diamonds include;
- Hardness of 10 MOHS
- Face centered cubic internal crystal structure
- 2.42 comparable hardness
- Affordable price
- Ideal cut
Having looked at their properties, mention was made in the beginning of the article about the colors of artificial diamonds. This is why there is need to look at the available colors of lab diamonds, Prices, clarity, growth and cut are different for different colors too.
AVAILABLE COLORS OF LAB GROWN DIAMONDS
As said earlier, man created diamonds have different colors ranging from white to green.
It is important we look at the colors of the man made diamonds, the growth time, the prize comparison to the natural diamonds, the available shapes, the cut and clarity.
WHITE LAB MADE DIAMONDS
Any carbon diamond that has no impurities is referred to as the colorless diamond. However both the natural and the man-made diamonds have impurities mostly in form of Nitrogen. This is because almost all diamond (either natural or man-made) starts out as yellow diamond.
The nitrogen lattice in the natural diamonds is separated after million years of exposure to heat and pressure. The separation gives the diamond the ability to shine white.
Our lab grown diamonds do not have millions of years to split, but growing the diamond with little or low Nitrogen results in the same thing.
To grow a white diamond, an incredibly controlled environment with constant temperature (heat) and pressure is needed because fluctuation may stop growth of the diamond.
The process of extracting nitrogen and boron from the cell makes the growth slower and for this reason, 1.0 carat of diamond grown in up to two weeks.
For the fact that the growth of the white diamond is temperamental and time consuming, they are very limited in supply while the white natural diamonds are in abundance which makes their cost comparable. The price of the Natural and Man-made white diamonds for a carat will fall within the range of $5,600- $10,000 depending on the carat, cut, size and clarity.
Lab made diamonds have a clarity ranging from IF to
YELLOW LAB CREATED DIAMONDS
Just like the white diamonds too, the yellow lab made diamonds are chemically, physically and optically identical to the naturally mined yellow diamond. The yellow man made diamonds are just conflict free and are also available in color range of yellow. The yellow color ranges from fancy yellow to fancy vivid yellow.
Nitrogen is the major source of color for both the naturally mined and artificial diamond. The introduction of impurities in a controlled rate during the process of culturing gives right to the yellow man created diamond. The more the nitrogen added to the process the yellower the diamond but adding excess nitrogen gives the diamond a brownish look.
In the growth machine, it takes just five to six days to end a cycle of production of the 1.0 to 2.0 carat of diamond. The growth of yellow man made diamond is faster because the nitrogen left during growth process speeds up the growth.
Yellow lab made diamond are not abundant in nature and since yellow man made diamonds cost about 75% less than the scarcely available natural yellow diamond, the yellow made diamond is always a good option. The fact that the yellow man made diamond is also easier to make makes it less expensive than the natural counterpart.
Most yellow shaped diamonds grow in a truncated octahedral shape. Shapes like asscher, emerald are typically gotten from it to maximize the yield.
BLUE LAB GROWN DIAMONDS
The blue lab made diamonds are chemically, physically and optically identical to the naturally mined blue lab diamond. The blue man made diamonds are conflict free and cost about 10% of the amount needed to get a naturally mined pink diamond. The blue diamond made in the lab also ranges from the fancy blue to the fancy intense blue diamond.
Boron is the source of color for both the natural and lab made blue diamond. Boron is the impurity that is introduces in the process of diamond growth. Controlled introduction of boron results in varying lab made blue diamond.
About 7- 10 days is required to produce 1.0 carat of blue diamond. The boron introduced helps in speeding up the growth of the diamond.
The lab made blue diamond is just 10% of the cost of a natural blue diamond and falls within the range of $7000-$12,000 per carat.
The blue diamond most times grow in hexa-cubic shape, the best shapes produced are usually round and corner shapes like cushion and asscher are generated.
PINK MAN MADE DIAMONDS
Just like the white, yellow and blue diamonds too, the pink lab made diamonds are chemically, physically and optically identical to the naturally mined pink lab diamond. The pink man made diamonds are conflict free and cost about 5% of the amount needed to get a naturally mined pink diamond. The pink diamonds made in the lab also ranges from the fancy pink to the fancy deep pink diamond.
The process of getting color in the pink diamond is different from the process of color formation in the other three discussed above.
While the white, blue and yellow engineered diamond gets their color during the process of growth, the pink lab created diamond get its color after growth treatment. The process is referred to as irradiation and annealing.
Pink diamonds can also be made from slightly yellow lab made diamonds through the process of irradiation. Irradiation means showering the diamonds with neutrons and electrons.
Other diamonds color like green, red and purple are also available and their growth process is the same with that of the pink man created diamond.
Naturally mined costs between $56000- $150,000 per carats because of the availability (mots naturally mined pink diamonds are from Australia) but the synthetic diamond cost between the range of $5000- $10000 per carat. The color of the pink diamond also has effect in the price.
The shape of the pink diamond is the same as that of the yellow diamond
This is a dependent factor. It depends on the saturation, the lesser the saturation, the lower the clarity and the fuller the saturation, the higher the clarity.
Other points that I will like to highlight include;
Color of diamonds after production is permanent and is also resistant to wear and tear.
Care should be taken when trying to repair the settings of diamond or service it so as to avoid exposure to high temperatures.
This is because exposing the diamond to high temperature may result in color variance.
I hope this article have given you the necessary and detailed information you need to know about lab diamonds. If you find the article helpful, kindly help your friends top by sharing the article with them so they can also know about the lab made diamonds.