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|Consumer Confidence in Diamonds|
Consumers expect to purchase diamonds in their natural state. Anything that could affect the confidence of consumers when purchasing diamond jewellery is potentially damaging to both the De Beers Group and the diamond industry.
Confidence, mystique and integrity can be eroded if consumers are misled into purchasing treated diamonds, synthetic (man-made) diamond material or diamond simulants in the belief that they are untreated or natural as the case may be.
Disclosure of synthetics, treated diamonds and diamond simulants requires simple and effective means of detection. The Consumer Confidence Technical Research Group at the DTC Research Centre, through basic research, has developed practical solutions and instruments, mainly for use at gemmological laboratories, for the identification of synthetics, treated diamonds and diamond simulants.
- Maintaining the integrity and mystique of diamonds on behalf of the consumer is at the core of the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) Consumer Confidence Programme, which promotes the application of the DTC Diamond Best Practice Principles.
- The Diamond Best Practice Principles are designed to ensure the clear disclosure to consumers of synthetics, treated diamonds and diamond simulants.
- A keen eye is kept on developments within the diamond industry to safeguard both industry and consumer confidence in the integrity of natural diamonds.
- In response to trade concerns about the use of treatments that can change the natural appearance and other properties of diamonds, the DTC has funded educational programmes in association with leading trade bodies and provides educational seminars to the trade and gemmological laboratories.
Scientific Research and Practical Solutions
The DTC Research Centre is the scientific linchpin in the Consumer Confidence Programme. The objectives are to ensure the ready detection of:
As the technologies for the manufacture of synthetics and the treatment of diamonds become more sophisticated and widespread the DTC Research Centre has maintained a level of research that has enabled it to anticipate potential developments in these areas.
- Treated diamonds
- Diamond simulants
DTC scientists undertake detailed research into diamond physics, to understand the smallest differences between:
Experimental diamond treatments and the manufacture of HPHT grown and chemical vapour deposited (CVD) synthetics are specially carried out for research to identify potential challenges to identification.
- Natural diamonds
- Treated diamonds, and
From the foundation of basic research, the DTC Research Centre develops techniques and instruments for use by gemmological laboratories world-wide to allow for rapid, cost-effective screening and detection of synthetics (both HPHT grown and CVD), treated diamonds and diamond simulants.
In particular, in collaboration with major gemmological laboratories, DTC scientists have made substantial progress into methods for the detection of HPHT treated natural diamonds. This intensive research is continuing in order to understand better the effect of HPHT treatment on all diamond types.
With the possibility of small numbers of polished synthetics entering the market, the DTC has devised two instruments for gemmological laboratories to screen all their diamonds, simply and rapidly, and test for 100% of synthetics:
The DiamondSure and DiamondView instruments are now available for purchase. All enquiries should be made to GIA Instruments UK Ltd via the website http://www.giainstruments.co.uk.
- The DiamondSure(tm) tells the user whether a polished stone is a natural diamond or requires a second test to establish its identity.
- This second test is performed on the DiamondView(tm) which allows the user to identify definitively whether a referred stone is a natural diamond or a synthetic.
The Diamond Trading Company has also produced a multimedia CD-ROM: DIAMONDS, Treatments, Synthetics and Simulants. This will enable you to explore the Consumer Confidence Technical Research discussed on these pages in greater depth. In particular, the CD-ROM includes the latest on research into diamond treatments and synthetics, with background information and video presentations on the screening and detection of synthetics using the DiamondSure™ and DiamondView™ verification instruments.
CD Rom Diamonds Treatments, Synthetics and Simulants
Spot the Spin
We found the article on the debeersgroup.com website at: http://www.debeersgroup.com/DebeersWeb/About+De+Beers/De+Beers+World+Wide/Diamond+Trading+Company+%28Dtc%29/Consumer+Confidence.htm.
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