About Lab Grown Diamonds

Lab-grown diamonds ( also known as man-made diamonds,synthetic diamonds,lab-created diamonds) are more beautiful and affordable than anything we will get out of the earth. In layman’s terms, lab-grown diamonds are simply the diamonds that were created in the laboratory by scientists as opposed to natural diamonds that we acquire by mining earth. What makes both of them different is the process of the creation of diamonds. We at Avtaara are using these diamonds which are created by replicating the earth’s natural process of crystallizing carbon into brilliant diamonds that are chemically, optically and physically identical to earth-mined diamonds. But these lab-grown diamonds come priced up to 40% less, and free of any humanitarian abuse. Think of this as making ice in your freezer versus getting it from a glacier; both are ice regardless of the origin.Hence our lab grown diamond jewellery made with these synthetic diamonds help you save around 40%-50% on your diamond jewellery purchases.

How Are Lab Grown Diamonds Made?

Each laboratory-created diamond is grown by placing a diamond ‘seed’ into a chamber of heat and pressure. This chamber mimics the natural diamond growing process. Crystallization occurs allowing the lab-grown diamonds to mature within six to ten weeks. It is then cut, polished and graded by the same world-renowned labs that certify earth-mined diamonds. The two following techniques are most commonly used by laboratories to create lab-grown diamonds:

CHEMICAL VAPOR DEPOSITION (CVD)

Chemical Vapor Deposition, or CVD, is a process used to create gem-grade diamonds as well as optics and semiconductors. The CVD process uses ultra-pure carbon-rich gasses in a controlled chamber. Carbon-based gasses, such as methane, are heated until they break apart allowing the carbon atoms within the gas to separate. These tiny carbon atoms fall onto a diamond substrate and build up layers resulting in a rough diamond crystal. This process takes between six to ten weeks and yields gem-grade Type IIa diamonds.

In recent years, CVD research has gained popularity and now modified versions of CVD are being used. These processes differ in the means by which chemical reactions are initiated. Some of these variations include:

  •  Low-pressure CVD (LPCVD)
  •  Ultrahigh vacuum CVD (UHVCVD)
  •  Plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD)
  •  Microwave Plasma Vapor Deposition (MPCVD)

HIGH-PRESSURE HIGH-TEMPERATURE (HPHT)

High-Pressure High-Temperature, or HPHT, recreates a diamond’s natural growing environment found deep within the Earth. The machines used have the ability to build up the pressure of almost 60,000 atmospheres and temperature of 2,500 degrees Celsius.

The growth cell contains all the elements needed to grow a diamond, including a seed, highly refined graphite and a catalyst mixture consisting of metals and powders. The cell is placed in the center of the HPHT chamber. Consistent temperatures reaching 1,300 degrees Celsius and more than 50,000 atmospheres of pressure are applied. The catalysts inside the cell are the first to react to the added heat and pressure and change from solid to molten form.

The molten catalyst solution causes the graphite within the cell to dissolve. Once all the required conditions are met, the cooling process begins. This process takes place over several days and allows the carbon atoms to build upon the seed. The cell is removed from the HPHT machine once the growth cycle is complete. The new rough diamond is extracted and cleaned in preparation for final cutting and polishing.

The entire HPHT growing process requires an incredibly controlled environment to produce a gem-quality diamond. Any shift or change during growth can cause the diamond to stop growing or can create inclusions that result in unusable diamonds. Every diamond must complete the entire growth cycle before the machine can be opened. It is only after the HPHT chamber is opened that we can see the finished rough
diamond and it’s color, clarity, and size.

Within the HPHT process, there are three primary tools used to supply the pressure and temperature necessary to produce lab-created diamonds. These are:

1. Bars Press

The Bars Press is the most effective tool used for producing gem-quality diamonds. It uses a combination of inner and outer anvils to apply hydraulic pressure to the growth cell.

2. Belt Press

The Belt Press is the founding technology behind growing diamonds. It can be large and produce several diamonds in only one cycle by using two large anvils that press together to create the necessary pressure. It is capable of producing gem-quality diamonds but is most
commonly used to produce lab-grown diamonds and diamond powder for industrial purposes.

3. Cubic Press 

A Cubic Press can be large in size and uses six separate anvils to create the necessary pressure for diamond crystal growth. It is also used to create diamond powder for industrial purposes.

How to Tell the Difference Between Lab-Grown Diamonds and Mined Diamonds?

You can’t find out the distinction between lab-grown diamonds and natural diamonds without specialized equipment, even if you’re a professional gemologist. A satisfactory way to tell the difference between lab-grown diamonds and real diamonds is to take a look at the grading report.

Comparison between Lab Grown Diamonds and Mined Diamonds

Properties Lab Grown Diamonds Mined Diamonds
Conflict Free Yes No
Hardness (MOHS) 10 10
SP3 Carbon Diamond
Bonds (%)
100% 100%
Internal Crystal Structure Face-Centred Cubic Face-Centred Cubic
Hardness Comparable 2.42 2.42
Colour K to D Grades Various Grades
Price $$$ $$$$$
Cut Very Good to Ideal Poor to Ideal