Diamonds are considered a symbol of purity, strength, and love in every society around the world. Diamonds are suitable to flag off eminent journeys of life like- engagements, weddings, etc; it is also used to symbolize stark achievements like anniversaries and birthdays. Considering its complex method of mining and chain of distribution, diamonds are becoming expensive with every passing day.
With science making progress in every field under the sun, attempts were made to create diamond artificially under controlled environments since the late 19th century. But diamonds of reliable quality and approved composition were created a few years back and since then, lab-made diamonds are attracting the attention of the masses and have been fueling lab grown diamond vs mined diamonds debate.
How are lab grown diamonds made?
There are two ways in which lab grown diamonds or synthetic diamonds are made-
· High-Pressure High-Temperature Process
Diamond seeds are placed in carbon and are exposed to extreme heat with temperature exceeding 2000 degrees Fahrenheit and to rigorous pressure of 1.5 million PSI. It melts the carbon and let it form a diamond around the seed, later cooled off to form the diamond.
· Chemical Vapor Deposition
In this method, the diamond seed is placed in a vacuum chamber and is filled with gases rich in carbon and is heated to 1500 degrees Fahrenheit. The gas is turned into plasma, releasing the carbon pieces, which gets layered onto the diamond seed, eventually growing the diamond.
Differences between lab grown diamond vs mined diamonds
Let’s take a look into the basic differences between lab grown diamond vs mined diamonds-
· Method of creation
Mined diamonds are formed with the Earth’s crust under intense heat and pressure causing carbon atoms to crystallize forming into diamonds over a long period. On the other hand,lab-made diamonds are created by the same methodology, but in a controlled lab environment with the help of sophisticated machinery and way faster.
The major difference between lab grown diamond vs mined diamonds are the stark difference in their prices. Lab grown diamondsas the name suggests are made in a lab and could be made directly available to the end-user as per requirement, eliminating middle channels. On the contrary, mined diamonds are sourced from either riverbed, ocean floors, or, via underground mining. It involves a lot of manpower, risks, external factors, geopolitical conflicts, etc, which increases the selling price significantly.
Carbon structure and chemical composition
It is important to remember while choosing between lab grown diamond vs mined diamonds that both the diamonds have the same carbon structure and chemical composition. But with various complications arising with diamond mining, it would be ideal to consider lab-made diamonds seriously.
Benefits of considering lab-made diamonds
· Lab-made diamonds are almost 70% cheaper as compared to its mined counterpart
· It has the same chemical, physical properties.
· Lab-made diamond vs mined diamonds both have the same grading process of 4Cs i.e. color, clarity, carat, and cut.
· Lab diamonds come with the same certifications as compared to mined alternatives.
Now that it is quite clear in the war of lab-made diamond vs mined diamonds. Let’s take a look into the social impact of sourcing the diamonds as well.
Few negative impacts of mined diamonds on the society
· Hazardous practices followed while mining diamonds create a detrimental impact on the worker’s physical as well as psychological health.
· Mining creates a major negative impact on earth’s ecological balance too. Acres and acres of landmasses are dug and mountains are exploded in search of natural diamonds.
· (Blood) Diamonds mined from the war zones are used to finance insurgency and terror activities.
There are many more issues to consider before taking a call between lab grown diamond vs mined diamonds. But next time when you are in the market for a diamond, please remember what is your precious stone funding, environmental degradation, and bloodbath or economic and ecological balance.