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Wednesday, June 17, 2009


popular method of growing synthetic diamond is chemical vapor deposition (CVD). The growth occurs under low pressure (below atmospheric pressure). It involves feeding a mixture of gases (typically 1 to 99 methane to hydrogen) into a chamber and splitting them to chemically active radicals in a plasma ignited by microwaves, hot filament, arc discharge, welding torch or laser.[73] This method is mostly used for coatings, but can also produce single crystals several millimeters in size (see picture).[51]

At present, the annual production of gem quality synthetic diamonds is only a few thousand carats, whereas the total production of natural diamonds is around 120 million carats. Despite this fact, a purchaser is more likely to encounter a synthetic when looking for a fancy-colored diamond because nearly all synthetic diamonds are fancy-colored, while only 0.01% of natural diamonds are fancy-colored.[11] Producing large synthetic diamonds threatens the business model of the diamond industry. The ultimate effect of the ready availability of gem-quality diamonds at low cost in the future is hard to predict.


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