Thursday, March 08, 2007

Gemstones

Some gemstones are manufactured to imitate other gemstones. For example, cubic zirconia is a synthetic diamond simulant composed of zirconium oxide. The imitations copy the look and colour of the real stone but possess neither their chemical nor physical characteristics. However, true synthetic gemstones are not necessarily imitation. For example, diamonds, ruby, sapphires and emeralds have been manufactured in labs, which possess very nearly identical chemical and physical characteristics to the naturally occurring variety. Synthetic corundums, including ruby and sapphire, are very common and they cost only a fraction of the natural stones. Smaller synthetic diamonds have been manufactured in large quantities as industrial abrasives for many years. Only recently, larger synthetic diamonds of gemstone quality, especially of the coloured variety, have been manufactured.


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