A Comprehensive Guide To Lab Created Diamonds
How are lab created diamonds made? A lab created diamond is produced in the same way as a naturally occurring diamond, but with an added step that removes any trace of impurities. Lab created diamonds are also known as CVD diamonds, or synthetic diamonds, because they’re made in a laboratory using the Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) process.
What Are Synthetic Diamonds?
Contrary to popular belief, lab created diamonds are not man-made. These diamonds are also called synthetic diamonds because they’re made in a laboratory. Technically speaking, there’s no such thing as a man-made diamond. The word synthetic is incorrect and should be replaced with lab created, although it may be considered too late since people have been saying synthetic for so long that it has become part of the vernacular lexicon of those in the diamond industry.
Regardless of what you call them—artificial, lab created or synthetic—these gemstones look exactly like natural mined diamonds, but for an affordable price tag. Lab created diamonds aren’t cheap; they’re just less expensive than their earth-mined counterparts. Lab created stones can be found on some of Hollywood’s biggest stars, including Jennifer Lopez and Kim Kardashian West, who both sport these gems on their fingers. So how do lab created diamonds compare to naturally occurring ones? Let’s take a closer look at how lab created diamonds are made and what makes them special.
Where Are They Made?
While lab created diamonds are often referred to as synthetic, it’s important to note that these gems are created in a lab by scientists. The process involves growing a diamond from nothing—something that takes place in specialized laboratories around the world. For example, one of these labs is located at General Electric Co., where GE manufactures diamonds for research and industrial purposes. (Fun fact: Because of its innovative work with lab-created diamonds, GE was awarded more than 70 patents for various applications involving CVD.) There are also many other labs creating man-made diamonds; you can learn more about them here. How Are They Made?: Lab created diamonds are made through a method called chemical vapour deposition (CVD).
To understand how CVD diamonds manufacturer, let’s first discuss how naturally occurring diamonds form. As pressure and heat build inside Earth’s mantle, carbon atoms begin to crystallize into graphite. Over time, additional layers of graphite form on top of each other until they reach extreme depths—roughly 150 miles below ground level. At such depths, pressures become so intense that carbon atoms bond together and form what we know as diamond crystals.
What Sets Them Apart From Natural Ones?
One of the biggest differences between natural and lab created diamonds is that one is made by a living being (you, when you were born) and another by man. Lab-created diamonds are also known as cultured or synthetic diamonds. A cultured diamond is essentially a piece of carbon that has been grown in a laboratory under conditions similar to those found deep inside Earth’s mantle at high temperature and pressure over an extended period. Once it has reached full size (about 100 microns wide), it’s cut into a round brilliant shape, polished and then sold for commercial use in things like jewellery. Natural diamonds are formed over billions of years as carbon crystallizes under extreme heat and pressure within volcanic rock formations called kimberlites.
The process is nearly identical to how lab-created diamonds are made, except they form naturally underground instead of in a factory setting. Cultured stones have several advantages over their natural counterparts: they can be created with exacting specifications (colour, clarity, cut and more), they tend to be less expensive than naturally occurring ones due to their mass production method and there’s no risk involved with mining them from dangerous places like war zones or countries where human rights violations occur.
Is Lab Grown Correct?
lab grown diamonds are essentially real diamonds, with one major difference. They’re not mined. According to The Jewelry Institute, which represents over two-thirds of global diamond jewellery sales, there is no significant difference between a natural diamond and a lab-grown one. The 4Cs (carat weight, cut, colour and clarity) will be identical—with both having higher scores than naturally occurring diamonds of lower value. Lab created diamonds producers produce hundreds of thousands of stones every year that are identical in terms of quality and appearance to their mined counterparts—and they can do it for up to 90% less.