Wednesday, May 18, 2005

major breakthough in Diamonds...

In a major breakthrough a 10 carat, half inch thick single crystal diamond was made, at a rapid growth rate like 100 micrometeres per hr, by the chemical vapor deposition process (CVD). Dr. Russell who leads this study said that, many groups have tried to produce single diamond crystals with the CVD process but the attempt at making flawless, colorless ones is still in vain. He further stated, "High-quality crystals over 3 carats are very difficult to produce using the conventional approach."

This research was carried out at the Geophysical Laboratory at Carnegie Institute. This diamond is about five times the size of a common diamond which is usually made by the HPHT (high pressure/high temperature) process or other CVD processes. Most HPHT synthetic diamonds are yellow and most CVD diamond are brown, limiting their optical applications. But the Carnegie team has sucessfully made colorless single-crystal diamonds, transparent from the ultraviolet to infrared wavelengths with their CVD process.

Now as colorless diamonds are being produced at high growth rate and low costs, large blocks of diamonds should be available for a variety of applications. “The diamond age is upon us,” concluded Hemley.

single crystal diamond

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