Natural Vs Synthetic Diamonds
Synthetic diamonds (also referred to as man-made, laboratory-grown or lab-grown diamonds) entered the gem and jewelry market in commercial quantities over a decade ago.
While synthetic diamonds possess the same chemical, physical and optical properties as a natural earth-mined diamond, they are a manufactured product.
Natural diamonds formed deep in the earth under extreme pressure and high temperature as long as three billion years ago. Volcanic activity brought them to the surface where they lay in a type of volcanic rock formation known as kimberlite pipes. Some diamonds have been found on the ocean floor, carried from their host rock after thousands of years of rains and flowing rivers where they are discovered by professional diamond divers.
There are two different methods for creating synthetic diamonds Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) and High Pressure, High Temperature (HPHT). In HPHT, a carbon seed is placed in a chamber and exposed to extreme heat and pressure. Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) is the most typical within the jewelry industry. The CVD method places a diamond seed in a vacuum chamber. This chamber becomes filled with carbon-rich gases and is heated to nearly 1500 degrees Fahrenheit. The gas turns into plasma from the extremely high temperature, causing the release of carbon pieces. These carbon pieces become layered onto the diamond seed, which grows the diamond.
Although identical in appearance to natural diamonds, they have differences that can be detected by trained gemologists and equipment designed for that purpose.