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LAB DIAMONDS

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has expanded its definition of “diamond” to include lab grown diamonds as part of several changes to its jewellery guidelines.

The FTC’s previous definition of a diamond stated: “A diamond is a natural mineral consisting essentially of pure carbon crystallized in the isometric system.” This is no longer applicable since new listing does not include the word “natural.”

According to the FTC technological advances have made it possible to create diamonds in a laboratory, “they have essentially the same optical, physical and chemical properties as mined diamonds. Thus, they are diamonds.” 

Our lab diamonds graded and certified by IGI in Belgium and The Gemlab in Cape Town

HPHT DIAMONDS


HPHT is short for high pressure, high temperature and is one of the primary methods used to grow diamonds in a lab. This diamond growth process exposes carbon to extreme pressure and temperatures and is meant to imitate the extreme heat and pressure conditions deep within the earth where natural diamonds form.

 

THE HPHT DIAMOND GROWTH PROCESS

  • Diamond seed is placed in a specifically designed press.

  • The growth chamber is heated to 1300-1600 °C with pressures above 870,000 pounds per square inch.

  • The molten metal dissolves the high purity carbon source.

  • Carbon atoms precipitate on a small diamond seed crystal, and a synthetic diamond begins to grow.

  • The lab-grown crystal is then cut and polished by a diamond cutter

CVD DIAMONDS


CVD stands for chemical vapor deposition and is another method used for making diamonds in a lab. Diamonds grow from a hydrocarbon gas mixture subjected to moderate pressures and temperatures in a vacuum chamber.

 

THE CVD DIAMOND GROWTH PROCESS

  • Diamond seed crystals are placed in a diamond growth chamber.

  • The chamber is filled with carbon-containing gas.

  • The chamber is heated to about 900-1200°C.

  • A microwave beam causes carbon to precipitate out of a plasma cloud and deposit onto a seed crystal.

  • Diamonds are removed every few days to have the top surface polished to remove any non-diamond carbon before being put back in to grow. Each batch of diamonds may require several stop/start cycles, and the entire growth process can take three or four weeks.

  • Once the synthetic diamond crystals are removed, they are ready to be cut and polished into the final product.

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