Most of us think about luxury jewelry when thinking about diamonds. We picture stunning necklaces around the necks of royalty, or we see an engagement ring on the finger of one of our favorite celebrities. But there is so much more to diamonds than decorative jewelry. In fact, we think there are many things that you probably don’t know about these amazing stones. Below are a few of the more interesting facts about diamonds.
- Diamonds are the hardest natural occurring substance on the Earth. The only thing capable of cutting a diamond is… a diamond. On the Mohs Scale of Hardness, diamonds score top marks at a 10.
- Natural diamonds are made from carbon. They are created deep within the Earth’s crust where the carbon is subjected to massive amounts of pressure and extreme heat. Over time, the diamonds are brought to the surface by volcanic activity. They are currently mined in places like Sierra Leone, South Africa, Australia, Zimbabwe, and Canada.
- Diamonds are used for construction purposes. The folk at Devour Tools say that diamond metal blades are regularly used for cutting some of the hardest substances we have, such as concrete, porcelain, and stone. However, diamond blades are typically encrusted with crushed synthetic diamonds rather than natural diamonds.
- Diamonds have been around for billions of years. The oldest diamonds are believed to have been formed more than 3 billion years ago.
- Although most commonly white or transparent in color, diamonds are actually found in many colors including blue, green, red, yellow, brown, pink, black, and orange.
- The word diamond comes from the Greek word ‘adamas’, which translates as indestructible or invincible.
- Not all diamonds mined are considered to be gem quality. Diamonds come in various shapes, sizes, and colors. The cut, clarity, color, and carat are that which determine whether it will make it as a gem. Those that are considered not to be of gem quality will typically be used for industrial purposes.
- As well as being used for construction, diamonds are used in other industries including health and science, automotive, aerospace, pharmaceuticals, and defense. You might be surprised to know that diamonds are commonly used in audio equipment. They are found in needle tips of vinyl record players and in speakers for greater clarity of sound and to prevent wear and tear. They are also used in dentistry to make it easier and more precise for dentists to drill holes in teeth (which incidentally score a 5 on the harness scale).
- The biggest diamond ever found weighed 3,106.75 carats. It was found in Cullinan, South Africa in 1905 and was hence named the Cullinan Diamond. It was presented to King Edward VII in 1907 by the Transvaal Colony government and was then cut into smaller diamonds of assorted sizes. The Cullinan I is the largest stone to have been cut and is currently mounted in British Sovereign’s Scepter with Cross. The Cullinan I remains the largest clear-cut diamond in the world today. The second largest is the Cullinan II, which can be found in the British Imperial State Crown.
- In 2004, scientists discovered a planet that is made up of mostly carbon, one third of which is pure diamond. They named the planet ‘55 Cancri e’. Scientists also discovered a star that is made of diamonds, and this star has been named ‘Lucy’ after the song ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’ by the Beatles.
Diamonds are far more than just decorative gems to be worn on the body. As the hardest naturally occurring substance in the world, they are used in a variety of industries as cutting tools.