Your complete guide to understanding CVD diamonds.
Q: Are CVD diamonds synthetic?
A: No, CVD diamonds are neither synthetic nor artificial. They are as real as natural diamonds and are grown in a laboratory instead of being mined from under the surface of the earth.
Q: Is CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) the same as CZ (Cubic Zirconia)
A: Absolutely not, the two are completely different. CVD diamonds are 100% real diamonds meaning they are entirely made up of carbon. Cubic Zirconia does not contain any carbon and are significantly weaker in hardness as compared to CVD diamonds that are real diamonds.
Q: What is the difference between natural diamonds & CVD diamonds?
There is no optical, thermal, physical or chemical difference between natural & CVD diamonds. They both are made up of carbon, however CVD diamonds have an edge over most natural diamonds as CVD diamonds are 100% carbon, the purest type of diamonds – type IIa diamonds.
Q: What is Type IIa?
A: Type IIa is a type of diamond grade as classified by the world’s most prominent diamond grading and certifying organizations such as Gemological Institute of India (GIA). The type IIa diamond grade is applicable to the purest form of diamonds, devoid of any chemical impurities whatsoever. Only 2% of natural diamonds are Type IIa, all of Limelight diamonds are type IIa diamonds.
Q: How are diamonds grown in a laboratory?
A: Diamonds can be grown in laboratories through two processes namely CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) and HPHT (High Temperature High Pressure)
Q: What is the difference between CVD and HPHT?
A: All diamonds produced through CVD process are 100% carbon & are thus purest diamonds, whereas HPHT diamonds contain chemical impurities and hence are not the purest diamonds.
Q: What is the difference in the diamond creation process through CVD & HPHT?
In chemical vapor deposition, a natural diamond seed is infused with gases under controlled temperature & pressure conditions, resulting in diamonds that are 100% carbon. The HPHT method on the other hand uses molten metal as a catalyst, which results in chemical impurities.
Q: What exactly happens in the CVD process?
A: In chemical vapor deposition or CVD, diamonds are created by subjecting the natural diamond seed to high pressure & temperature inside the machine chambers along with an infiltration of gases. The gases work up their magic when subjected to high pressure & temperature to disintegrate the carbon atop the seed to form purest form of a diamond – a Type IIa diamond. There are currently only a handful of players in the world as CVD is a capital-intensive and complex technology that is also very hard to replicate.
Q: Why are CVD diamonds cheaper than natural diamonds?
A: CVD diamonds are created using an advanced technology in laboratories whereas natural diamonds are mined from under the surface of the earth. CVD diamonds do not incur the expense of mining and hence are significantly lesser in price.
Q: Do CVD diamonds impact environment and our society?
In comparison to natural diamonds, CVD diamonds do not cause environmental damage. They are devoid of any ethical, social or environmental issues.
Q: Is CVD technology readily available?
The CVD technology is capital-intensive and is currently only available to a handful players across the globe.
Q: Do CVD diamonds change color over time?
A: No, CVD diamonds are equivalent to natural diamonds in terms of its color, optics, physical & thermal compositions. So they do not change color over time and are as resilient as natural diamonds.
Q: How long does it take to grow a diamond through the CVD process?
A: Depending on the size of the diamond, the growing process can take anywhere between 3-12 weeks but usually takes 3-4 weeks.
Q: Can you tell the difference between CVD diamonds and natural diamonds just be looking at them?
A: No the naked eye cannot tell the difference between natural diamonds and CVD diamonds. In fact, more often than not, CVD diamonds have a better luster as compared to its natural counterparts. Specifically designed hi-tech machines can tell the difference between CVD and natural diamonds.