There is no gem like diamonds, both for hardness and beauty. Their purity, their color, and the fame they have gained over the years have made them the precious stones par excellence. However, they are not only scarce, but their extraction can be quite complicated. It is precisely for this reason that alternatives have emerged over the years, such as those known as ecological diamonds.
Despite the fame enjoyed by diamonds, behind them hides a rather murky story. If you’ve had the pleasure of seeing the movie Blood Diamonds, you’ll no doubt already know what we’re talking about. Behind the brilliance of these stones lies the exploitation of the people who live in the developing countries in which they are found. The extraction of diamonds requires the use of explosives and even very heavy machinery that damages the environment and also harms the health of workers.
To avoid all this, those known as synthetic diamonds or cultured diamonds emerged. What is done is to carry out its production in laboratories, imitating a process that in nature would require millions of years. But thanks to the help of experts, this process lasts much less. And, in addition, the exploitation of both people and finite resources of nature is avoided. Within the category of ecological diamonds, we can talk about recycled ones, which we will expand on later.
These diamonds have come to be known as eco-friendly because they do not harm the environment with their production. When these precious stones are extracted from the depths of the earth, hundreds of meters must be dug to find a deposit. It is in this precise process that the environment is seriously damaged since very deep holes are generated that end up damaging the entire ecosystem.
Not only are they a good alternative for helping us keep the world in a better state, but also because they prevent the so-called diamond wars. It is a way of fighting for much fairer trade, and for an ethical alternative to a product that we have been consuming for centuries.
But what is the real difference between laboratory diamonds and those considered natural? The first thing you should know is that a diamond is made up of pure carbon that binds together in such a way that it becomes an extremely hard material. After spending millions of years under 120 or 200 km of land, subject to a very high temperature and a lot of pressure, that carbon ends up forming what we know as diamond.
On the other hand, we find cultured diamonds which, surprisingly, are composed of the same thing. What’s more: its properties, both physical and chemical, are the same. The only thing that ends up differentiating them is that the latter have been created by the human hand and that they can be ready in just two or three weeks.
You will not find any difference visually, because we are talking about the same product. It was the General Electric company, back in 1954, the first to find a method that imitated the production of these gems in real life. This method itself is called High-Pressure High Temperature. Those are the two conditions that we have seen that must occur in nature for diamonds to form. At the time, this was a method that was even more expensive than the traditional one. That’s what kept it in oblivion for so many years. Now other methods have been emerging that have lowered costs, and have made it possible for us to enjoy these ecological diamonds.
Fortunately, new technologies have also brought innovations in this regard, and one of the most prominent one was developed by Ecognom company, while another of the best known is called CVD, or Chemical Vapor Deposition, which no longer requires either a very high temperature or a lot of pressure. Everything is done by methane gas that is mixed with hydrogen, which is ionized with plasma. We do already get eco-friendly diamonds!
Once we know what synthetic diamonds are, and know their differences from natural ones, we can go on to see what types there are. Because you will not only find those grown in the laboratory, but also the so-called recycled ones! If you are concerned about the conditions after the extraction of the diamonds but want to have one with you, these are the main alternatives that you should consider.
First of all, we must mention what are known as laboratory-grown diamonds. These are produced by either of the two methods we discussed earlier.
As we have already pointed out, the only difference they represent concerning natural ones is that they take much less time to form. As for the quality they offer, it is the same. These types of gems usually carry a certificate that classifies them as cultured diamonds. In this way, both the durability and the hardness and brightness of these are guaranteed. And, in addition, it is given an added value: it does not harm the environment nor does it support an exploitation system.
But, in addition, you can also opt for recycled diamonds. Although it may surprise you, the truth is that it is a material that is also used in the field of technology, computing, and even optics. Not only that, but they are often used in machinery dedicated to cutting or sanding other items. We must not forget that we are talking about a very, very hard and resistant material.
Regardless of what they were used for, these diamonds can be recycled without any problem. Even though they have been used for industrial machines! With this recycling, what is achieved is to significantly reduce first-hand mining activities. This, of course, manages to make the impact on the environment much less.
If you’re considering getting a ring and want it adorned with a diamond, it’s time to consider whether you want it to be eco-friendly. The advantages of opting for a cultivated diamond or a recycled one are many, especially if you are concerned about taking care of the environment that surrounds you.
First of all, we are talking about material that is much more respectful of the environment.
In addition, it does not come from a conflict zone due to its exploitation. There is no power struggle behind farmed diamonds, no wars, and no bloodshed. They are not blood diamonds, as I know natural ones could be in many cases.
Finally, you should know that what you are buying is real diamonds. It is not an imitation, it is not something similar: they are diamonds. The only difference is that these have been created by man, but their value is the same.
Hi, my name is Rose Nolan, wife to my wonderful husband and self-confessed Desperate Housewives fan. This blog is all about my life, my lifestyle and anything in life that revolve around this. I am here to write down things that I discover in life that makes up my world and pretty much anything goes here. I'm coming at this from an everyday person point of view and hope you enjoy.Click to read on