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Brief history of the synthetic diamond



The first documented experiences in the synthetic reproduction of a diamond date back to 1880 with the English chemist James Hannay and 1886 with the French winner of the Nobel Prize for chemistry Henri Moissan. The two scientists, using different methods, succeeded in obtaining microscopic diamond crystals after long and costly experiments. There has been much talk about Henri Moissan in recent years, since Moissanite, the best alternative to diamonds existing today, and which takes its name from him, was released onto the market. Experimentation continued for the whole of the first half of the 20th century but the results obtained were scarce and of doubtful value.

In 1955, the American company General Electric announced that it had produced synthetic diamonds; it was an excellent result but the crystals were tiny (just a few millimetres thick) and the quality was still very low. The only use they could be put to was industrial. In 1963, De Beers also announced the production of diamonds created in collaboration with Société Miniére du Beceka, a Congolese mineral company, but the cost of the raw, laboratory-created material was greater than the natural product. In 1971, General Electric produced the first yellow-brown coloured diamonds reaching the size of about one carat while the quality was still of an industrial type. In 1985, the Japanese company Sumimoto succeeded in producing yellow crystals of a higher quality but no larger than 2 carats. In 1987, De Beers measured itself against large sizes and produced a yellow-brown crystal of 34 carats, for experimental purposes.

We have to wait until 1990 for the production of the first raw materials suitable for cutting and transformation into gemstones for jewellery. Russian scientists were able to produce a crystal of a precise nature in the laboratories of Novosibirsk, in Siberia, with the same process as that used in the rest of the world (called the BARS method), but with different machinery. De Beers continued to experiment in its laboratories in South Africa to obtain colourless, yellow, brown black and blue gems throughout the 1990s. It was also concerned with the development of new instruments which would enable the correct and certain identification of synthetic diamonds.

In recent years, synthetic diamonds have been on sale. They were mostly yellow-orange up to little more than one carat, and mainly produced in Russia and America. They were very beautiful but their cost was still rather high, only 20% less than natural stones. The same can be said of colourless synthetic diamonds, which are more difficult to obtain. Their cost is only slightly less than natural ones and the quality is not perfect.

And here’s the great new item with the offer of Malossi Gemmecreate – light yellow synthetic diamonds, of optimal quality, at a very, very economic price. These three elements make them a very special product, at long last.





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