What is a Lab Grown Diamond?
A lab-grown diamond is a gem that is identical in chemical composition to a mined diamond, but which was grown in a laboratory environment, rather than mined from the earth. Lab-grown diamonds are “real” diamonds in every way! In fact, in 2018 the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) ruled that lab-grown diamonds were “natural” diamonds and can be referred to as such.
LGD Technology (Pardon us in advance for the Geek Speak!)
There are two distinct manufacturing processes used to grow diamonds in a lab: HPHT and CVD.
HPHT (High Pressure High Temperature) is the older of the two processes, around since the 1950s. In HPHT, a small amount of graphite is subjected to extreme temperatures and pressures, which replicates the extreme heat and pressure conditions deep inside the earth that cause diamonds to form.
The second and more recent method is termed CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition). This is a vacuum deposition method that is often used in the semiconductor industry to produce thin films. The diamond CVD technique was first investigated over 30 years ago, but it is only within the last decade that the technology had improved to the point where very high quality diamond can be formed.
In CVD, a thin slice of diamond – called a seed – is placed in a sealed chamber and heated to a very high temperature. After the chamber is heated, a carbon-rich gas mixture is introduced into the chamber, and those gases are ionized into plasma. The chemistry created in the plasma along with the high sample temperature results in growth of high-quality diamond.
Intense research is going on all over the world to continue improving this process, and the team at Clarity Diamond is part of that research community! Bringing beautiful diamonds to delighted owners is the ultimate goal of growing diamonds, and we just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to participate in that. And while we’re cutting, polishing, and distributing Clarity diamonds, our R&D team continues to innovate the growing process as well as the growing equipment. To date, very few lab-grown diamond producers can grow diamonds to the same size and quality that Clarity Diamond consistently produces. We’re pretty excited about that.
Diamonds are most recognized as a jewel, but they are also used for hundreds of industrial processes, some of which Clarity is exploring. So, the work of perfecting lab-grown diamond growing will continue to be an important part of Clarity Diamond’s R&D future. We can offer you the most beautiful diamonds now, and we’re committed to discovering even better ways of manufacturing and using diamonds in the future!
The Benefits of Lab Grown Diamonds
In the case of lab-grown diamonds, benefits are in the eye of the beholder.
One of the primary benefits of a lab-grown diamond is that you can get more – and more beautiful! – diamond for the money. Of course, another benefit of a lab-grown diamond is that it can give the wearer boasting rights. Lab-grown diamonds are a fantastic example of advancing technology and scientific ingenuity. If you’re into innovation, a lab-grown diamond is certainly symbolic of that. Lab-grown diamonds also do not require blasting holes in the ground, do not chemically pollute water sources for nearby communities, and are not associated with the kind of conflict and human rights abuses often associated with mined diamonds.
So, if you’re looking for a lot more diamond for the money, love the idea of wearing a jewel that is the result of human ingenuity, and would like to avoid the moral quandaries that can affect mined diamonds, lab-grown diamonds will be a good solution for your diamond-jewelry ambitions.
Do Lab Grown Diamonds retain Their Value?
We can't answer whether a lab-grown diamond holds its value any more than a seller of a mined diamond can say. That's because all diamond prices fluctuate over time. A better question to ask would be "is there a resale market for lab-grown diamonds?" And the answer is, yes! There is a resale market for lab-grown diamonds.
Are Lab Grown Diamonds as Strong as Mined Diamonds?
Lab-grown diamonds are identical to mined diamonds in in their chemical and material composition, which means that Lab-grown diamonds match mined diamonds in hardness, durability, and strength. This means lab-grown diamonds are one of the hardest materials on earth, along with their mined counterparts.
How Are Lab Grown Diamonds Certified?
Just like mined diamonds, lab-grown diamonds are graded and certified. We send our diamonds to labs that specialize in grading diamonds, like G-Cal, Gemological Institute of America (GIA), and International Gemological Institute (IGI). Every diamond we sell comes with a certificate from a trusted lab.
Clarity Diamond uses the CVD (chemical vapor deposition) method of growing diamonds. We start with a seed - essentially, a thin wafer of diamond material. The diamond seed is sealed in a vacuum chamber and heated to 900° fahrenheit, and inundated with carbon rich gasses.
This is a question a lot of people ask. We answer it in the most transparent way in this short explainer video.