The Story of an Unearthly Gem
Moissanite, known in chemical nomenclature as silicon carbide, is a very unique gem that is just starting to gain mass appeal, though its history is extremely long and interesting, as it involves the discovery and production of a new kind of gemstone. 50,000 years ago, a meteorite is believed to have struck the earth. Within that meteorite, it is thought that the first moissanite came to earth. With no naturally occurring moissanite, it was not until modern technology allowed for the development of process to create silicon carbide in a laboratory, making the new gemstone commercially available. Known widely for its intense fire and captivating brilliancy, moissanite jewelry is quickly becoming known for being out of this world.
Its brilliance has a quantifiable and scientific basis. It bears a refractive index of 2.65, which is incredibly high, considering diamond has a refractive index of 2.42, and the higher a gem’s refractive index, the more it is able to capture surrounding light to sparkle and enthrall its onlookers. Quantifiably, moissanite sparkles more than earth’s illustrious diamonds. Also, moissanite has a fire rating of 0.104 while diamond has a fire rating of 0.044. Fire is, quite simply, oh much rainbow colored light that a gem emits. In this regard, moissanite has double the fire of diamond, meaning that it emits double the amount of rainbow colored light. The only quality in which moissanite is exceeding by diamond is in regards to its hardness. While Diamond is still the hardest substance that human beings are aware of, moissanite is a very close second.
With the development of the techniques that allow the production of moissanite, it is quickly becoming a much sought after stone. Aside from the story of its birth, it bears its own captivating, unearthly qualities on its own, making moissanite jewelry some of the beautiful and interesting pieces in the world.