What are lab grown diamonds, and are they really a more sustainable alternative to traditional mined diamonds?
A lab-grown diamond is a diamond: chemically, physically and optically identical to a mined diamond. Naturally occurring diamonds are forged in the crushing pressure and immense heat of the Earth’s mantle around 100 miles underground. Most were formed between 1 billion and 3 billion years ago at a time when our planet was hotter than it is today. Lab-grown diamonds are also created using extreme pressure and heat, but inside a machine rather than the bowels of the Earth.
There are two ways to grow a diamond. Both involve starting with the “seed” (a flat slither) of another diamond. The first lab diamond was made using a High Pressure High Temperature (HPHT) system, where the seed is then placed amidst some pure graphite carbon and exposed to temperatures of about 1,500C and pressurised to approximately 1.5 million pounds per square inch in a chamber.
More recently, another way to grow a diamond was discovered, called Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD). This involves putting the seed in a sealed chamber filled with carbon-rich gas and heating to around 800C. Under these conditions the gases begin to “stick” to the seed, growing a diamond carbon atom by atom.
The technology behind lab diamonds has made crucial advances in recent years, allowing companies to grow higher quality diamonds more rapidly and more affordably.
Welcome to the new age of Cultured Diamonds for the Cultured Individual. Choose Better, Think Better.
Contact us here to kick-start your bespoke journey to finding the best lab-grown diamond for you.