Cremation diamonds are becoming a huge part of American culture. People are starting to see the need to keep the memories of their beloved ones alive by turning their cremation ashes into precious stones. However, there's often a need to ensure that the cremation diamond is certified and of a good grade.
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What Are Cremation Diamonds?
Just as the name implies, cremation diamonds are real diamonds formed from the cremation ashes of loved ones. The only significant difference between natural and cremation diamonds is their origin. The natural diamond is formed when carbon atoms are subjected to high temperatures beneath the earth's crust. In the case of cremation diamonds, the whole process is improvised.
Since the human body contains about 18% carbon content, there is enough resource to simulate the conversion of natural carbon to diamond. Similar to the natural setting of diamond formation, a high-pressure and high-temperature (HPHT) environment is simulated in the lab. The carbon from the cremated ashes is eventually subjected to intense heat to form cremation diamonds.
Cremation diamonds are the perfect memorial item that helps people keep memories of their loved ones. These beautiful pieces are often incorporated into pendants and bracelets that can be worn at all times. This way, such persons are assured that their departed loved ones are always by their side.
Why Certification and Grading of Cremation Diamonds?
Even though diamonds have been mined for centuries, their grade and quality are often questioned. It's no secret that most diamond buyers like to ascertain the quality and grade of their diamonds before making a purchase. However, it's almost impossible to determine the grade and quality of a diamond via an ordinary eye gauge. This is exactly where the diamond grading and certification process becomes quite necessary.
Jewelers and independent laboratories employ the diamond grading system to determine a widely acceptable scale. Diamond grading is quite important because it contains a detailed report of some of the unique qualities of the diamond. Expert gemologists carry out these assessments and grading to ensure correct results.
Asides from diamond grading, diamond certification also serves as an ample medium to assure jewelers of the diamond quality. In many ways, jewelers are assured of the quality of the gem when they see a certificate from a reputable body.
The grading and certification examine the diamond's color, clarity, and cut grading accuracy. Simply put, diamond certification is a good way to ensure you're getting good value for money.
Grading of the Cremation Diamond
In certain cases, the certification might not be enough for you to make an effective decision on diamond quality. To properly understand the basis of certification and grading, there's a need to have a firm knowledge of diamond characteristics. These characteristics help prospective cremation diamond buyers determine if the certification of their diamond is correct.
So what exactly are those characteristics that make a cremation diamond stand out?
The carat characteristic of a cremation diamond is one of the salient features of any standard grading report. In most informal settings, the diamond's carat is considered the best test of quality. The carat of a cremation diamond refers to its weight, equating to 1/5 of a gram (0.2 grams). The diamond carat grading uses a 100-point system for 1 carat of diamond. The carat value of a diamond also determines its cost and value. A reduction in the number of points results in a decrease in the diamond's value.
This characteristic of a diamond simply refers to the degree of imperfections present in a cremation diamond. The formation process of cremation diamonds makes it almost impossible not to have certain impurities or blemishes. Cremation ash is subjected to high-pressure and high-temperature (HPHT), a process that could leave scars on the diamond.
Diamond clarity also serves as an important facet of the grading process. Impurities inside the diamond are called inclusions, while those on the surface are called blemishes. Like the carat grading system, Gemologists use a scale to determine clarity levels in diamonds. Using an 11-point clarity scale, a diamond is graded from flawless to prominent inclusions point. Flawless means the diamond has no blemishes or scars, a very rare occurrence; on the other hand, prominence inclusion means the diamond has many scars and blemishes.
Just as every other timeless piece, cremation diamonds come in an array of eye-catching colors. Gemologists use the color characteristic of the diamond to grade it on a scale of A-F. These experts take the diamond's hue, tone, and saturation to determine the color spectrum it falls. In many ways, the color range of the diamond also affects its value and price. Diamonds with deep and powerful colors are more valued than those with brighter colors. There are also colorless diamonds that are quite rare and are more valuable than others in the grading system.
Fluorescence is another important influencing factor in the color grading system. It is widely believed that diamonds with intense fluorescence have great color qualities. Gemologists use the fluorescence scale to grade diamonds according to the amount of boron trace in the diamond.
The cut is widely regarded as an essential grading characteristic of cremation diamonds. Diamond cut simply refers to the symmetrical arrangement within the diamond, which is examined by exposing the diamond to a light source. Cut grading is carried out by examining the direction of light reflection on the diamond. Perfect cut diamonds usually reflect light to the optimum. There are also diamonds with deep and shallow cuts; all of these are included in the diamond grading report. The diamond-cut plays an important role in assessing the grade of the diamond.
The Process of Diamond Grading
Diamond grading is quite an elaborate process, and it begins as soon as the diamond arrives at the laboratory. It is a standard procedure for ensuring optimal anonymity throughout the grading process. Diamonds that come with name tags are immediately stripped of such tags while it's subsequently replaced with a unique ID number.
The entire process of diamond grading is one that's carried out with an emphasis on proper handling. The grading experts adopt special care in handling to ensure that the diamond doesn't lose its identity during the inspection and grading phase. These grading experts also use high-grade technology to constantly track the location of the diamonds in the laboratory. This tracking process allows them to analyze every step in the grading phase.
Once the grading process is complete, the Gemology Institute of America issues a certification. The issued report is very thorough, professional, and detailed. The certification report encompasses a hologram, micro-print lines, and other specific security components. All of these extra security measures ensure diamond owners can verify the authenticity of the certification. When all of these are done, the GIA staff at the laboratory ensure that the diamond and the certification are delivered to the owner.
Cremation diamonds are some of the most precious items, especially as it has a connection to departed loved ones. However, there's always a need to verify if these diamonds are truly unique. The process of grading and certification was designed for the sole purpose of ensuring optimal quality. Expert gemologists do grading and certification under the umbrella of the Gemologist Institute of America (GIA). Cremation diamond buyers now know what to expect from a grading and certification test on their diamonds.