For years I was unaware that natural diamonds can occur in a variety of colours. It was only when I was given a diamond ring as an anniversary gift – he must have been watching my dreamily scrolling through the beautiful rings on https://www.comparethediamond.com/ . After receiving my beautiful slightly pink tinted diamond I had to find out what other colour varieties were available.
Here is what I found out.
Diamonds can in fact occur in a number of different colours. From grey, blue, pink, purple, red and yellow to name a few. The purest diamonds around are clear in colour and the colour found in diamonds like the one in my diamond ring are in fact there as a result of imperfects in the stone. (I would say the pink tint is pretty prefect myself!)
Diamonds are graded into two types (with several sub groups within each type). The sub groups are determined by how the light absorbed by the diamond is affected by the impurities found within the stone itself.
Type I – these diamonds tend to have either a clear colour or a slight yellow tint to them. This is due to the imperfections in the stone being due to nitrogen atoms present in the stones makeup. Whilst these on their own do not affect the overall colour if the atoms join together in an even number they produce a yellow/brown tint when the light is absorbed in to the diamond. Most of the diamonds in this type belong to what is known as the Cape series. This is named after the Cape Province in South Africa which is a diamond rich area. When the nitrogen atoms locate themselves singularly through the diamond the overall colour of the diamond is affected, and a more intense yellow/brown colour is found. These coloured diamonds are incredibly rare. The Canary diamonds, as they are known, make up only 0.1% of all known diamonds.
Type II – these diamonds do not continue nitrogen impurities but instead have different fluorescence characteristics meaning that they absorb Iight in a different region of the infrared light spectrum and they transmit colour in the ultraviolet region of light. They tend to be pink, red and brown in colour and have what is known as plastic deformation which occurs during crystal growth. These diamonds are also very rare and make up 1.8% of all diamonds and most of them are found in Australia diamond mines. Another variety in this time is blue in colour and this is due to boron being scattered throughout the crystal during formation. Again, they only make up 0.1% of diamonds. Interesting they are also semi-conductors.
So, there is so much more to the colour of my diamond than I had thought.