Learning Library

Moissanite Gemstone

Elsewhere in  this  book  we  discuss  Moissanite as a man-made gemstone. In actual  fact the matter is a little more complicated than  that.

Moissanite  was  first  created  in  a  laboratory  in  1893  by  the  inventor  Eugene Acheson. At  the time of patenting his creation he named it  Carborundum.  22  years  later,  French  chemist  Dr  Ferdinand  Moissan  discovered  the  exact  same silicon carbide composition while studying  fragments of meteoric iron at the Diablo Canyon  in Arizona; this new discovery was later named  Moissanite in his  honour.  Because the natural  pieces are so small it is classed as an element and  to-date no piece has been found large enough to  facet. 

Moissanite  first  appeared  in  jewellery  in  the  1990’s  and  was  the  creation  of  a  company  called C3 Inc of America. They have created a  proprietary process for creating this man-made  material, which bears a striking resemblance to a  Diamond. So much so that when it first appeared,  many in the jewellery trade predicted it would  dramatically affect the sales of Diamonds and  many  experts  initially  struggled  to  correctly  identify the difference between the two.

So, although all Moissanite on the market set in jewellery is man-made, it shares the same  elements as a piece of nature. Essentially, it is  the same as a lab-created coloured gemstone.  Although  it  is  undeniably  beautiful,  when  purchasing remember that as it is man-made  in a laboratory, company owners can produce  as much as they want, therefore it cannot be  rare. And if it is not rare, then it is not really  a gemstone at all.

Back to Learning Library