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The History Of Synthetic Ruby: Origins And Properties
Povijest sintetičkog rubina: podrijetlo i svojstva
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The History Of Synthetic RubyHow can you tell the difference between real and synthetic rubies? Chances are, most of us can’t. In fact, if you walk into your neighborhood jewelry store and browse through their selection of rubies, you may not notice much difference between the gems. They're all cut like rubies and have the blood-red coloring, but does that mean they're real rubies or synthetic?

For decades, gemstone buyers have faced an unusual choice: to buy gems from below ground or above it.

So, what are synthetic rubies, and are they equally as striking as real rubies? Keep reading to learn about the history of synthetic rubies, and how to spot a real from a fake.

What Is A Synthetic Ruby?

Synthetic rubies are essentially lab-grown gems using advanced technology. These lab-grown stones are just as real as their mined counterparts but take about 3 billion fewer years to form, give or take.

The basic definition of a synthetic gem is a precious stone that's grown in a lab under the same condition that real gemstones form. While there are a couple of different ways to make synthetic rubies, the most commercially used technique is chemical vapor deposition (CVD).

Invented by the Harvard chemist Roy Gordon, CVD starts by placing a ruby "seed" in a sealed chamber full of methane gas for 30 days. During that time, the molecules from the gas attach themselves to the seed-gemstone, bulking it up layer by layer.

At the end of the 30 days, that little seed is now a gem-sized ruby ready to adorn a ring or necklace.

A fascinating feature of this process is that it creates stones with the same physical characteristics and properties of their natural counterparts.

Of course, not everyone is jazzed on synthetic rubies, and rightfully so. As Marvin Gaye and Tina Turell put it, "ain't nothing like the real thing, baby."

Your choice is entirely preferential, and synthetic rubies are an alternative because they're nearly identical to natural rubies — the only difference being their origin.
history of synthetic ruby

How Are Synthetic Rubies Made?

We've mined natural ruby for 8,000 years. In many cultures, the gems are prized not only for their beauty but also for their perceived supernatural powers. One commonly held belief is that the ruby's red color came from fire trapped inside the stone. In Burmese and Native American cultures, people believed the blood-like color of rubies formed a protective shield around the wearer.

It's easy to see that everyone loves rubies, which is why it was one of the first artificially made gemstones.

The First Synthetic Rubies

The earliest synthetic gems were Geneva Rubies, produced around 1885, and sold as authentic gems. However, they were actually "reconstituted" fragments of natural rubies melted together.

While the creator of these stones remains a mystery, researchers traced their origins to Geneva, Switzerland. And that's how these mysterious synthetic rubies got their name!

The discovery of the Geneva Rubies piqued the interest of a pair of French chemists, Auguste Verneuil and his assistant Edmond Frémy. In 1877, they began perfecting their process of heating a mixture of pure alumina and chromium oxide. Once the mixture starts to melt, it's drops form bright red crystals known as "boules." These crystals are collected, cooled, then polished and cut into beautiful gems!

Sadly, Frémy died in 1894 before the duo was able to produce a gem-quality synthetic ruby. Verneuil kept at it and exhibited his laboratory-made gems at the 1900 Paris World's Fair.

His process took a mere two hours to grow crystals weighing 12-15 carats! By the time Verneuil died at the age of 57 in 1913, the flame fusion process he and Frémy invented had produced 10 million carats of rubies annually.

Synthetic Rubies In Jewelry

Surprisingly, most synthetic rubies are used for technical purposes. Their tolerance for high temperatures makes them excellent thermal conductors, so they're also often used as lenses for high-powered lasers.

In fact, when Theodore H. Maiman made the first working laser in 1960, he used a synthetic ruby to produce the red laser light. The more you know!

Since synthetic rubies don't have the inclusions and impurities seen in natural gems, they were an instant hit with jewelry designers. The sudden abundance of these beautiful red stones also lowered prices, allowing shoppers to add even more pieces to their jewelry collections.

Many consumers are attracted to lab-created rubies for a variety of reasons, including:

  • The environment: lab-created stones aren't dependent on natural resources, so the impact is lower.

  • Labs don't require the same mining utilities and resources, which means the price points are lower than real rubies.

Do Synthetic Rubies Have Inclusions?

Most people can't trace the differences between real and synthetic gems. It takes high magnification, a collection of technical instruments, and an expertly-trained eye.

The main distinction between synthetic vs. natural rubies are the presence of inclusions.

Natural rubies typically have inclusions from the crystallization process — gases and other minerals mixing together while the gemstone grows. Lab-grown rubies have fewer inclusions because they rely on a consistent, controlled process of applying minerals, heat, and pressure.

However, if you are buying a piece of jewelry from a designer, you shouldn't have to wonder whether the rubies they're selling you are synthetic.

The FTC (Federal Trade Commission) updated its guidelines in 2018 for the Jewelry, Precious Metals, and Pewter Industries. The new regulations state that jewelers are legally obligated to inform clients that they are purchasing a lab-grown gemstone.

Federal laws and technical instruments aside, the easiest way to tell if a ruby is real or synthetic is the cost: if a price tag seems too good to be true, it probably is!
history of synthetic ruby

Synthetic Rubies Vs. Real Rubies: Which Is Better?

While natural stones will always have a special place in our hearts, synthetic gems are a cost-effective alternative.

Of course, you can never replicate the natural perfection of something like a striking ruby,

but synthetic rubies are a worthy substitute if you'd like to expand your collection on a budget.

SHOP FOR NATURAL RUBIES

Povijest sintetičkog rubina Kako možete razlikovati prave i sintetičke rubine? Velike su šanse da većina nas ne može. Zapravo, ako uđete u draguljarnicu u susjedstvu i pregledate njihov izbor rubina, možda nećete primijetiti veliku razliku između dragulja. Svi su izrezani poput rubina i krvavocrvene boje, ali znači li to da su pravi rubini ili sintetički?

Desetljećima su se kupci dragog kamenja suočavali s neobičnim izborom: kupiti dragulje ispod zemlje ili iznad nje.

Dakle, što su sintetički rubini i jesu li jednako upečatljivi kao i pravi rubini ? Nastavite čitati kako biste saznali više o povijesti sintetičkih rubina i kako prepoznati pravi od lažnog.

Što je sintetički rubin?

Sintetski rubini su u biti dragulji uzgojeni u laboratoriju korištenjem napredne tehnologije. Ovo kamenje uzgojeno u laboratoriju jednako je stvarno kao i njihovo iskopano kamenje, ali treba oko 3 milijarde godina manje da se formira, da ili uzme.

Osnovna definicija sintetičkog dragulja je dragi kamen koji se uzgaja u laboratoriju pod istim uvjetima u kojima se stvaraju pravi dragulji. Iako postoji nekoliko različitih načina za izradu sintetičkih rubina, komercijalno korištena tehnika je kemijsko taloženje pare (CVD).

Izumio ga je kemičar s Harvarda Roy Gordon, CVD počinje stavljanjem "sjeme" rubina u zatvorenu komoru punu plina metana na 30 dana. Za to vrijeme, molekule iz plina se vežu za sjemenski dragi kamen, gomilajući ga sloj po sloj.

Na kraju 30 dana, to malo sjeme sada je rubin veličine dragulja spreman za ukrašavanje prstena ili ogrlice.

Fascinantna značajka ovog procesa je da stvara kamenje s istim fizičkim karakteristikama i svojstvima kao i njihovi prirodni kolege.

Naravno, nisu svi zaljubljeni u sintetičke rubine, i to s pravom. Kao što su Marvin Gaye i Tina Turell rekli, "nije ništa kao prava stvar, dušo."

Vaš izbor je u potpunosti povlašten, a sintetički rubini su alternativa jer su gotovo identični prirodnim rubinima - jedina razlika je njihovo podrijetlo.
povijest sintetičkog rubina

Kako se izrađuju sintetički rubini?

Kopamo prirodni rubin već 8000 godina. U mnogim kulturama dragulji su cijenjeni ne samo zbog svoje ljepote već i zbog percipiranih natprirodnih moći. Jedno uobičajeno vjerovanje je da je crvena boja rubina nastala od vatre zarobljene unutar kamena. U burmanskim i indijanskim kulturama ljudi su vjerovali da boja rubina poput krvi čini zaštitni štit oko nositelja.

Lako je vidjeti da svi vole rubine, zbog čega je to bio jedan od prvih umjetno izrađenih dragih kamenja.

Prvi sintetički rubini

Najraniji sintetički dragulji bili su ženevski rubini, proizvedeni oko 1885. i prodavani kao autentični dragulji. Međutim, oni su zapravo bili "rekonstituirani" fragmenti prirodnih rubina otopljenih zajedno.

Dok je tvorac ovog kamenja ostao misterij, istraživači su pratili njihovo podrijetlo do Ženeve u Švicarskoj. I tako su ovi misteriozni sintetički rubini dobili ime!

Otkriće ženevskih rubina zainteresiralo je par francuskih kemičara, Augustea Verneuila i njegovog pomoćnika Edmonda Frémyja. Godine 1877. počeli su usavršavati svoj proces zagrijavanja mješavine čiste glinice i krom-oksida. Nakon što se smjesa počne topiti, njezine kapi formiraju svijetlo crvene kristale poznate kao "boules". Ovi kristali se skupljaju, hlade, zatim poliraju i režu u prekrasne dragulje!

Nažalost, Frémy je umro 1894. prije nego što je dvojac uspio proizvesti sintetički rubin kvalitete dragog kamenja. Verneuil se zadržao na tome i izložio je svoje laboratorijski izrađene dragulje na Svjetskoj izložbi u Parizu 1900. godine.

Njegov proces je trajao samo dva sata za uzgoj kristala težine 12-15 karata! Do trenutka kada je Verneuil umro u dobi od 57 godina 1913. godine, proces fuzije plamena koji su on i Frémy izumili proizvodio je 10 milijuna karata rubina godišnje.

Sintetički rubini u nakitu

Iznenađujuće, većina sintetičkih rubina koristi se u tehničke svrhe. Njihova tolerancija na visoke temperature čini ih izvrsnim toplinskim vodičima, pa se često koriste i kao leće za lasere velike snage.

Zapravo, kada je Theodore H. Maiman napravio prvi radni laser 1960. godine, koristio je sintetički rubin za proizvodnju crvenog laserskog svjetla. Što više znaš!

Budući da sintetički rubini nemaju inkluzije i nečistoće koje se mogu vidjeti u prirodnim draguljima, odmah su bili hit kod dizajnera nakita. Iznenadno obilje ovog prekrasnog crvenog kamenja također je snizilo cijene, omogućujući kupcima da dodaju još više komada u svoje kolekcije nakita.

Mnoge potrošače privlače rubini izrađeni u laboratoriju iz raznih razloga, uključujući:

  • Okoliš: kamenje stvoreno u laboratoriju ne ovisi o prirodnim resursima, pa je utjecaj manji.

  • Laboratoriji ne zahtijevaju iste alate i resurse za rudarenje, što znači da su cijene niže od pravih rubina.

Imaju li sintetički rubini inkluzije?

Većina ljudi ne može ući u trag razlike između pravog i sintetičkog dragulja. Potrebno je veliko povećanje, zbirka tehničkih instrumenata i stručno uvježbano oko.

Glavna razlika između sintetičkih i prirodnih rubina je prisutnost inkluzija.

Prirodni rubini obično imaju inkluzije iz procesa kristalizacije - plinovi i drugi minerali koji se miješaju dok dragi kamen raste. Rubini uzgojeni u laboratoriju imaju manje inkluzija jer se oslanjaju na dosljedan, kontroliran proces primjene minerala, topline i pritiska.

Međutim, ako kupujete komad nakita od dizajnera, ne biste se trebali pitati jesu li rubini koji vam prodaju sintetički.

FTC (Federal Trade Commission) ažurirao je svoje smjernice 2018. za industriju nakita, plemenitih metala i kositra . Novi propisi navode da su draguljari zakonski obvezni obavijestiti klijente da kupuju dragi kamen uzgojen u laboratoriju.

Osim saveznih zakona i tehničkih instrumenata na stranu, najlakši način da se utvrdi je li rubin pravi ili sintetički je cijena: ako se cijena čini previše dobra da bi bila istinita, vjerojatno jest!
povijest sintetičkog rubina

Sintetički rubini vs. Pravi rubini: koji je bolji?

Iako će prirodno kamenje uvijek imati posebno mjesto u našim srcima, sintetički dragulji su isplativa alternativa.

Naravno, nikada ne možete ponoviti prirodno savršenstvo nečega poput upečatljivog rubina,

ali sintetički rubini su dostojna zamjena ako želite proširiti svoju kolekciju uz ograničeni proračun.

KUPUJTE PRIRODNE RUBINE

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