Do Lab Grown Diamonds Last?
Do lab-grown diamonds last? The short answer: Yes they last because they are one of the strongest substances in the world.
We’ve all heard the term, “diamonds are forever,” and natural-grown diamonds certainly live up to their reputation. But how do lab-grown diamonds fare in terms of longevity?
With the same level of hardness, toughness and stability as natural stones, the durability of lab-grown diamonds will likely ensure that your rock will be around for many years to come. As we elaborated on before, the man-made variety is formed from the same chemical and structural composition as natural diamonds, this makes them less likely to fall victim to wear and tear.
Much like natural diamonds, however, man-made diamonds are prone to breakage if hit hard enough. But you’d have to be doing something incredibly reckless and careless for your stone to fall victim to this fate. There’s also the risk of your lab-grown diamond being burnt if exposed to extremely high temperatures, such as those that occur when there’s a house fire. But this event would be so rare that the only factor which may prohibit a lab-grown diamond from being in your collection for years to come is if it were ever lost or stolen.
Lab-grown diamonds provide a durable, long-lasting and conflict-free alternative to natural diamonds that have the potential to be passed down for generations to come. Find out all you need to know right here. Jump to a section below by clicking the links or read on to find out why lab-grown diamonds last.
What Is A Lab-Created Diamond?
Despite what their name may suggest, lab-grown diamonds ARE real diamonds. But, unlike the more well-known naturally occurring diamonds which require miners to venture deep into the earth’s crust to retrieve one of these rare beauties, man-made diamonds are created in a controlled laboratory setting.
Much less expensive than natural diamonds due to being a lot easier to source, lab-grown diamonds or man-made diamonds have a history that dates back to the 1940s. Initially developed for industrial and medical purposes, it wasn’t until the late 1980s that manufacturers made them available commercially.
Lab-grown diamonds have grown tremendously in popularity in recent years. This is largely due to lab-grown diamonds being a lot more sustainable than normal diamonds as the carbon footprint left by miners when sourcing natural diamonds is immense. Lab-grown diamonds are also seen as a lot more ethical than normal diamonds. Those who have seen the Leonardo Di Caprio movie Blood Diamond will know that the diamond trade in some parts of the world has been linked to child labour, violence along with other major atrocities. Lab-grown diamonds, on the other hand, remain completely conflict-free.
Learn more: ★ What Is A Man Made Diamond?
How Are Lab-Grown Diamonds Made?
There are two ways that manufacturers create lab-grown diamonds. The first is through a process known as high pressure, high-temperature growth. This process mimics the conditions that a natural diamond is grown in. It involves placing a tiny diamond seed into a piece of carbon. The carbon is then placed into a belt press, split-sphere or cubic press where it is pressurised 680 thousand kilograms per square inch. The piece of carbon is also exposed to temperatures as high as 1400 degrees celsius. The pressure combined with the heat then begins to melt the carbon, forming a diamond shape over the initial seed.
The other method which is used to create a lab-grown diamond is known as Chemical Vapor Deposition or CVD. The more recent method of the two, CVD involves placing a diamond seed into a special chamber that is filled with carbon-rich gases such as methane and hydrogen and is exposed to temperatures up to 760 degrees celsius. These gases are then ionised and melted into plasma using technology that is similar to what is used in microwaves. This process breaks down the molecular structure of the gases, allowing carbon to stick to the seed and form a diamond.
If you’re in the market for lab-grown diamond rings be sure to check out how they sit in different coloured metals. Of course, our lab-created yellow diamond rings timeless but have you seen how a white gold lab created diamond ring or a rose gold lab created diamond ring can sparkle?
Are Lab-Grown Diamonds As Strong As Natural Diamonds?
One of the drawcards of natural diamonds is that they are extremely strong. On the Mohs Scale of Harness which is used to measure the strength and durability of minerals and stones, the diamond ranks at number 10 with one being the least tough on the scale. But how do the diamond’s man-made counterparts fare?
Made from the same chemical compound and structure as natural diamonds, lab-grown diamonds share the same physical characteristics. This means that man-made stones are just as hard-wearing as mined stones. Lab-grown diamonds also rank at number 10 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, making them somewhat resistant to scratches.
When determining the durability of a diamond, experts in the field will often refer to this as a diamond's toughness’. A diamond’s toughness measures how resistant the stone is to chips, cracks and breakage. How tough a diamond might be is determined by how tightly the stones atoms are bonded. This means that while most diamonds are pretty sturdy and chip-resistant, they have the potential to break if penetrated hard enough. Testing your diamond’s limits is not something we’d recommend trying at home though. As lab-grown diamonds undergo the same formation process and bear the same characteristics, their toughness level is likely similar to their mined counterparts.
Another factor that is considered when determining how strong a diamond is its stability. Stability is used to determine how well a diamond withstands temperature and chemical changes. Diamonds are most vulnerable in high heat. If a diamond was placed in conditions as high as 690 to 840 degrees celsius, it will begin to burn. These are often the temperatures a diamond is exposed to when it is being cut. Given lab-grown diamonds are made from the same chemical compound, it is likely they will also be susceptible to the risks when exposed to extremely high temperatures.