Lab Diamond Info Directory
|SP3 Carbon Diamond Bonds (%)||100%||100%|
|Internal Crystal Structure||Face-Centered Cubic||Face-Centered Cubic|
|Colour||Various Grades||K to D grades|
|Cut||Poor to Ideal||Very Good to Ideal|
What Are Lab-Created Diamonds?
Lab-created diamonds, also known as man made diamonds, lab-grown diamonds, and synthetic diamonds, are grown in highly-controlled laboratory conditions that simulate the Earth’s natural growing process. The results yield real diamonds that are physically, chemically and optically identical to mined diamonds.
While people have experimented with diamond growing technology for more than a century, it has only been in the last decade that we’ve been able to perfect the science of creating gem-quality diamonds in a modern-day lab, With today’s technological advances, we are creating diamonds that are free of conflict and superior to earth-mined diamonds.
White Lab-Grown Diamonds
A pure carbon diamond with no impurities will grade as a colourless diamond. However, the majority of both natural and synthetic diamonds contain impurities, most of which are nitrogen. The nitrogen atoms within the diamond lattice create the yellow tint. In cases of fancy coloured diamonds, a pure yellow colour is created. Nearly all diamonds, both natural and lab-created, start out as yellow diamonds.
Over the span of millions of years and exposure to pressure and heat, natural diamonds split the nitrogen atoms within their lattice rendering the nitrogen atoms ability to produce yellow light. The splitting of the nitrogen atoms is what gives the diamond its ability to shine white.
In the case of lab-grown diamonds, we don’t have millions of years to convert a yellow diamond to white, however, the ability to grow the diamond with little or no nitrogen produces the same result.
Growing a white diamond requires an incredibly controlled environment. The heat and pressure must remain consistent through the entire growing process. Any fluctuation or change within the growth cell can cause the diamond to stop growing or can create heavy inclusions.
Extracting the nitrogen and boron from the growth cell to remove the colour from the diamond lattice also causes the diamond to grow slower. White diamonds typically take up to two weeks or longer to grow a 1.0 carat stone.
It is the extended growth time, the need to extract certain elements from the growth cell and the demand to keep the heat and pressure consistent that makes growing a white diamond difficult thus contributing to their limited availability.
Unlike earth-mined diamonds, synthetic grown diamonds are in very limited in supply. The process used to create a white diamonds is also the most time consuming and temperamental. Given that white earth-mined diamonds are in abundance and white synthetics are in limited supply, the cost ends up being very comparable. A typical 1.0 carat synthetic diamond will range from $5,600 to $10,000. White synthetic diamonds are priced identically to mined diamonds using the cut, carat size, colour and clarity to determine their individual worth.
White diamonds yield a square-ish rough. This allows the most popular shapes to be produced: round, princess, asscher, cushion and emerald. These shapes compliment the diamond rough and in return give the highest yields. Elongated shapes like oval, marquise and pear typically aren’t produced because of their need for a more elongated rough.
Every diamond is cut to maximize brilliance and colour.
The clarity of a grown white diamond is evaluated the same as an earth-mined diamond, typically ranging from IF to SI2.