Our short version
Scientists tried for decades to produce synthetic diamonds. They eventually succeeded in 1955, in both Sweden and the US. The process involves high temperature under high pressure. (50,000 – 100,000 psi and 1500 – 2400 degrees C.) The diamonds produced were not gem quality.
In 1970, diamonds of gem quality were produced, but the costs of production were too high to be commercially viable.
More recently, a number of labs have been able to produce gem quality diamonds using at least 2 different methods. The resulting synthetics are significantly cheaper than their natural counterparts. Fancy colors as well as pure white are being produced.
Go to our long version of synthetic diamonds
- Diamond simulants such as cubic zirconia, resemble diamonds in appearance but are much less costly.
- Certain laboratory-created gemstones, such as lab-created Moissanite, also resemble diamonds and may not be adequately detected by the instruments originally used to identify cubic zirconia.
- Most diamond probes will identify Moissanite as diamond.
- Unethical dealers may try to substitute simulants for diamonds.
- Alan Hodgkinson has written one of the better articles on Moissanite
- Ask your jeweler if he has the current testing equipment to distinguish between diamonds and other lab-created stones.