growing diamonds in the lab

Thanks for Terrance Howard for opening my eyes to this.  He owns a company that does a little diamond making of their own.    

Robert Linares has been at the forefront of crystal synthesis research since he started working at Bell Labs in Murray Hill, New Jersey, in 1958. He went on to start a semiconductor company, Spectrum Technologies, which he later sold, using the proceeds to bankroll further research on diamonds. In 1996, after nearly a decade working in the garage of his Boston home, he discovered the precise mixture of gases and temperatures that allowed him to create large single-crystal diamonds, the kind that are cut into gemstones. “It was quite a thrill,” he says. “Like looking into a diamond mine.”

Seeking an unbiased assessment of the quality of these laboratory diamonds, I asked Bryant Linares to let me borrow an Apollo stone. The next day, I place the .38 carat, princess-cut stone in front of Virgil Ghita in Ghita’s narrow jewelry store in downtown Boston. With a pair of tweezers, he brings the diamond up to his right eye and studies it with a jeweler’s loupe, slowly turning the gem in the mote-filled afternoon sun. “Nice stone, excellent color. I don’t see any imperfections,” he says. “Where did you get it?”

“It was grown in a lab about 20 miles from here,” I reply.

He lowers the loupe and looks at me for a moment. Then he studies the stone again, pursing his brow. He sighs. “There’s no way to tell that it’s lab-created.”

via (Touch Me!)

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