Synthetic sapphires are widespread on the jewelry market. Natural stone is considered precious and has a high price. The alternate version also looks noble in products, and on the aesthetic characteristics there is little inferior to the first version.
What it is?
Natural gem is formed in a specific environment of millions of years. The price for it is excellent high, and the demand is still good.
Natural minerals are formed in the earth’s crust due to some geological operations that are interconnected in time and space.
Water, high temperature and powerful pressure form ore veins. They serve places of clusters of various crystals. In the Sapphire deposits there are also liquid gases that circulate in a closed space for many years.
In the laboratories of creating nanominerals, scientists recreated natural conditions. But so that the grown crystal was a decent size, it takes several months. Nano sapphires grow faster, and therefore cheaper than natural analogues. The cost of artificial stones is lower, but not so much to compare them with conventional glass. Clean and depth of color artificial crystals is the best than genuine minerals. Hydrothermal sapphire does not require additional refining, as a stone with genuine properties. These methods, by the way, roads and require additional investments.
Artificial sapphire, it means, a variety of corundum. He is the basis for rubies and emeralds. Blue color in sapphires is obtained thanks to titanium and iron. In synthesis also participates heated beryl. Taking into account the conditions of production, we can say that the synthetic stone is not grown, but cook. In the database of one of the mixtures of aluminum oxide, which looks like a conventional white substance. In Sapphire, it will turn only at a temperature of 2200 degrees Celsius. Crystallization rate of artificial sapphires 4 mm per hour. For large crystals you need a lot of time. In the future, if necessary, they are cut into pieces and processed, giving similarity with natural deposits.
Production of synthetic sapphire
The main method of production of artificial crystals requires a special furnace of Verneill. It is applied to decades. For this method, aluminum oxide is melted in the flame of the hydrogen-oxygen burner. Vernamel furnace make liquid drops. With gradual cooling, they form a crystal. In addition to sapphire, this technology is suitable for the production of ruby, as well as other precious stones. The difference is to add impurities of various metal oxides that give suitable color.
The technology invented at the beginning of the 20th century is used now. It has undergone only small changes, allowing to deploy the process to the conditions of large-scale production.
The ubiquitous spread of technology began from about 1932, and especially intensified during the Second World War. In production, a mixture of raw materials with specified physical and chemical qualities is used. Uniform components loaded into the unit are called “Bitter”.
Microparticle size in the composition of the charge from 1 to 20 microns. Portion of powder substances falling asleep in a bunker in which there are holes. Through them substances enter the furnace, where hydrogen burns. The mixture is melted and the seed crystal is increasing. The seed capacity rotates, providing uniform growth and heating. As it grows, the seed is at the bottom, and the upper part is converted into the face.
The form in which the mixture is located, reminds the expanding cone. Depending on the consumption of the main material in it, long crystals are obtained. In addition to the consumption, such parameters such as gases and speed of rotation are important, warm-up quality. The method has characteristic advantages:
- The ability to control the growth of crystals visually+
- The combustion temperature is automatically adjustable+
- Fluses and expensive crucibles in the finished material are missing.
- Due to the high temperature in the crystal, internal stresses appear+
- Due to the violation of the system rules in the preparation of the mixture, volatile substances may vary, and the subsequent recovery of the process is impossible.
Processing after cultivation
The resulting form and dimensions of crystals usually corresponds little to the parameters of the parts are made. Therefore, the processing of materials is almost always necessary. For machining, ordinary turns, milling or drilling machines are not applied. Products are different, so only abrasives are possible in work. Diamond discs or grinding, suspensions or special pastes can be applied.
Usually, particles of abrasive material are pressed into the surface of the material being processed. It forms microcracks, which in the course of the process moves deep into. Further actions lead to a whole network of cracks. They are closed, causing chips of individual sites. Their layers are removed from the surface, giving the product the right form.
Abrasive materials intended for processing, not in vain are separated by hardness.
The abrasive ability is depends on this property, which is expressed by mechanical or chemical resistance.
Specialists choose the desired abrasive on the mineralogical scale of Moos. According to the principal differences in Minerals, diamond corresponds to the tenth class, and the ninth corundum. Special grinders or suspensions are suitable for processing sapphires.
Grindingors are cast iron, glass, steel, copper or brass parts with abrasive micropowers. The graininess of the microphowers can be from M14 to M5. After grinding grown crystal, it is needed polished. For this process, an abrasive suspension is selected, which rubs into the surface to a complete uniform distribution. Polishing is carried out in two stages for which different abrasives with a rough or thin size of grain are selected.
What is different from natural?
Artificial Corundum, like natural deposition, blue or dark blue shade. Laboratory analog – popular imitation, distinguish which is difficult. Experts grow a synthetic product without chipping and damage, and such a quality likes Jewelers. You can check the product by external indicators:
- The artificial mineral has a more impeccable and clean tint+
- internal defects in it practically does not happen+
- liquid education if they are, then they are correctly spherical, whereas in natural deposits there are practically no+
- If extremely carefully consider genuine and synthetic sapphires, they can be distinguished from high-quality signs, and natural stones necessarily contain various natural inclusions that are not in the laboratory stone.
At the same time, the chemical and physical properties of both species are fully similar. Specialists distinguish the nuances that are hidden in the improper growth structure. Genuine and laboratory stone hardness.
To check the Sapphire stone similar to Sapphire, need special installations, for example, a refractometer, which is measured by the parameters of the light refraction.
Genuine minerals issue 1.762 – 1.778.
Another way involves the use of special fluid. MONOBROMNAFTALIN is placed in a container that is installed on a white paper background. Visible twisted colored stripes talk about artificial origin of stone. A short-wave ultraviolet can also be applied. Under his action, the real stone will not change the color. Grilled sample read white or dirty green. Glow can be red shade. It depends on the impurities used in the fitness.
In connection with the development of cultivation technologies of artificial sapphires, it becomes difficult to distinguish with their infringement techniques. Full conclusions can only be done by professionals who have appropriate skills. Help can and know certain properties of stone.
Artificial sapphire has internal properties identical to natural stone. In addition to the jewelry industry, it is widely used in watchmaking or as semiconductor material. For all semiconductors, high sensitivity of electrophysical qualities is characterized. Semiconductors are actively used in schemes for various techniques. Almost all modern integrated chips contain semiconductor elements in their composition.
Crystalline substances have the ability to carry out the electrotock, but at temperature changes, the action of light rays, the presence of impurities of other substances. Semiconductor applications Extensive: Radio engineering, optical electronics. In alternative medicine, Sapphire is known as antidote against many poisonous substances. Healing qualities of sapphire since sincerversion were used to gain pure thoughts, spiritual peace and equilibrium, for gaining adversity.
Selection and care
One of the most difficult stones for laboratory reproduction is the Vasil Sapphire. Creating this shade is impossible without careful training. Technical data must be complied with accurately. Natural stone of this shade is available only in India. In this country he is ritual and ritual chaff. It is chosen for the treatment of heart failure, gaining psychological sustainability. If the stone is to keep in the house, then well-being will come, and the owner of the Housing Leadership. The most beautiful natural samples of sapphires are stored in special funds such countries as:
- Thailand – 16 kg+
- Sri Lanka – 18 kg+
- USA – 15 kg.
Russia has a cornflower sapphire produced in the XIX century, it is stored in the country’s diamond fund. The stone is distinguished by incredible strength and durability. At home the decorations with sapphire require additional care. For decorations are harmful regular humidity, exposure to direct sunlight, dust. Products can be made regular cleaning. Conventional soap solutions or gels for the shower are suitable for soaking. The funds used should be then washed with cold water.
In jewelry stores you can find special care products for precious stones. They are usually in the form of sprays or disposable napkins. Dear money, therefore their use is extremely with strong contamination of jewelry. Since Sapphire rarely loses its original external shine, it is enough to use conventional home cleaning products that will be found at each mistress.
Watch the video to learn how to grow artificial sapphires.