What you Need to Know About Lab Grown Diamonds

Diamonds are one of the most beautiful minerals that exist. They are bright, resilient, and mesmerizing. Have you ever wondered where they come from, or how they’re made? Below we’ll explore the evolution of these precious gemstones and the popularity of lab grown diamonds.

What is a Diamond?

A diamond forges via the element carbon. When carbon reaches a state of solid form, the molecule’s atoms arrange in a crystal structure called a diamond cubic. These crystals bond together when exposed to high temperature and pressure.

How Are Diamonds Formed?

The processing of a diamond obtains its form through the proper temperature and pressure during its liquid state. When the carbon element reaches a temperature that is over 2,200 degrees Fahrenheit and maintains a pressure point of roughly 727,000 pounds per square inch, the crystallization structure occurs, producing a diamond.

The Origin of Diamonds

Most natural diamonds form at depths ranging between 90 to 150 miles inside the Earth’s core. You may be asking yourself– How were they able to retrieve the samples from such a vast depth?

Billions of years ago, our planet was in a much hotter state than it has been currently. Because of these high temperatures, volcanoes released large amounts of carbon. This resulted in millions of diamonds from inside the Earth’s core to surface. Once the leftover volcanic remains eventually cooled, the payoff was shiny! 

What are Lab Grown Diamonds?

There’s only one difference between a lab diamond and a mined diamond: its origin. Lab-created diamonds use advanced technology and share the same physical, chemical, and optical characteristics of diamonds found naturally. They’re also referred to as “synthetic diamonds”, but the materials inside of these diamonds are not fake. They’re still very much the real deal.

The History of Lab Diamonds

Because it’s difficult and rather time-consuming to source natural diamonds, new ideas emerged as the demand increased. With knowledge of how mined diamonds form, General Electric (GE) created technology that mimicked the same process of natural diamond formation. 

The first set of lab grown diamonds, manufactured in 1954, was initially kept secret. After some time, the processing of lab diamond technology became more open source and shared around the 1970’s. Since then, this method of obtaining diamonds has had positive benefits environmentally and economically. 

The Making of a Lab Grown Diamond

There are two different methods to manufacturing lab diamonds:

  • High Pressure High Temperature (HPHT) – HPHT uses powerful pressure and heat, which simulates the natural environment in which diamonds form. An HPHT diamond starts off with a small diamond seed that goes into a pressurized carbon chamber around 1.5 million pounds per square inch. Once pressurized, the carbon molecule melts and forms a diamond around the starter seed which is later cooled off, leaving the result of a pure carbon diamond behind.
  • Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) – CVD uses heat to remove carbon from their molecules, allowing them to fall onto a surface in which the diamond may form. Unlike the HPHT method requiring pressure, CVD is a method that ionizes gases into plasma. The ionization breaks the microscopic bonds inside of the gases, and what remains is pure carbon. The carbon later attaches itself to the tiny diamond seed and crystalizes.

Whether HPHT or CVD, lab grown diamonds take around 6 to 10 weeks to develop. 

What Are The Benefits of Lab Diamonds?

Greater Quality and Purity

Stones mined naturally may contain dirt or impurities ingrained in them, while lab grown diamonds carefully grow under quality-controlled conditions. This allows for an aesthetically pleasing appearance.

Less Expensive than Mined Diamonds

Lab grown diamonds are 20-30% less expensive than mined diamonds. Mined diamonds require a more extensive supply chain process, which adds to the overall cost.

Environmentally Friendly

Lab-diamonds are fully vegan and cause little to no environmental damage. The reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is three times less when diamond production happens in a lab. Additionally, the manufacturing of this diamond style isn’t dependent on fossil fuels.

Find Your Favorite Lab Grown Diamond at Rox Jewelers

Our staff will help you find your next lab-grown diamond upgrade. Additionally, we offer a variety of beautiful, customized diamonds made especially for you. Reach out to us to add lab grown diamonds to your jewelry collection today!