Lab Grown Diamonds

What are Lab-Grown Diamonds?

At Diamond Garden, all of our diamonds are lab-made. A Lab- grown diamond is a diamond produced in a controlled environment as contrast to a natural diamond which is created by geological processes. Lab-grown diamonds are made of the exact same chemical crystal that makes up natural diamonds. The differences between natural and lab-made diamonds are not visibly discernible, as both exhibit the same brilliance, sparkle, and shine. Our labs are designed to mimic the conditions of the earth’s crust through high pressure and high temperatures that create the carbon structure responsible for diamonds. This means that diamonds made in our lab are every bit as stunning and exquisite as natural diamonds.

While manmade and natural diamonds possess no discernable aesthetic differences, there are some crucial variations that make lab-made diamonds a better choice than their mined counterparts. Lab-made diamonds are guilt free, with no ecological consequences and without the conflict that diamond mining has historically caused. When you shop with DiamondGarden, you are supporting a more ethical diamond industry. When you purchase one of our pieces of jewellery, you don’t simply buy a piece that looks good, you buy a piece that does good.

Diamond mining has not only created social and community conflict, but has also been catastrophic for the environment. Diamond mining results in the removal of mass amounts of soil every single year, causing damage that is both immensely harmful and permanent. When you buy a diamond from DiamondGarden, you are refusing to support a destructive industry.

How are Lab Grown Diamonds Made?

Before we start about lab grown diamonds, one should know how mined diamonds are formed. Geologists believe mined diamonds are formed deep inside the Earth’s mantle (150-250 kms deep), some 1 to 3 billion years ago. Here, due to immense pressure (7, 25,000 pounds per inch) and high temperatures (2000 degrees Celsius), the carbon atoms present, gradually turn into a diamond. This same natural growing process is mimicked in a chamber where lab grown diamonds are formed.

There are two techniques commonly used in laboratories:

High Pressure High Temperature (HPHT)

HPHT diamonds are made using one of three manufacturing process: a belt press, the cubic press, and the split-sphere (BARS) press. All of these processes create an environment of extremely high pressure and high temperature found within the Earth’s mantle that is conducive to diamond growth. Here, a small diamond seed and pure carbon, essentially graphite, is placed in a chamber, exposing it to 2000 degrees Celsius and extreme pressures, approx. 1.5 million pounds per square inch. Under these conditions, the pure carbon (graphite) changes from solid to molten state. The pure carbon melts and starts to form a diamond around the starter seed. It is then carefully cooled to form a pure carbon diamond which may take several days. The new rough diamond is extracted and cleaned in preparation for final cutting and polishing.

Chemical Vapour Deposition (CVD)

A diamond seed is placed in a depressurizing chamber which is heated around 1500 degrees Celsius. Natural carbon rich gases like methane and others are zapped inside the chamber and ionized into plasma using a microwave beam. The ionization breaks the molecular bonds in the gases, and pure carbon atoms fall down upon the diamond seed, thereby sticking to it, expanding it and ultimately crystallising it into a diamond. The new rough diamond is extracted and cleaned in preparation for final cutting and polishing.

Lab-Grown Diamonds Versus Natural

While Lab-grown and natural diamonds possess no discernable aesthetic differences, there are some crucial variations that make lab-grown diamonds a better choice than their mined counterparts. Lab-grown diamonds are guilt free, with no ecological consequences and without the conflict that diamond mining has historically caused.

Properties Lab-Grown Mined
Conflict- Free Yes No
Environment Hazards No Yes
Hardness (MOHS) 10 10
Crystal Structure Face Centric Cubic Face Centric Cubic
Chemical composition 100% Carbon 100% Carbon
Colour D to K Various Grades
Cut V.G. to Ideal Poor to Ideal
Origin Sourced from 1st world countries So many hands exchanged, origin can’t be traced
Price $$ $$$$$
Refractive Index 2.42 2.42
Dispersion 0.044 0.044
Density 3.52 3.52