The DiamaPen is a pen-shaped laser that claims to be able to recognise potential synthetic stones
Diamond grading experts question DiamaPen
A new laser pen that claims to be able to recognise synthetic diamonds
is making global headlines, but grading experts in the USA and Australia
doubt its effectiveness.
Diamond Services Ltd’s DiamaPen, which was on display at the recent Hong Kong Gem & Jewellery Fair, is a pen-shaped laser tool that aims to help its user recognise synthetic diamonds [HPHT and CVD grown diamonds].
Numerous online publications reported EGL Asia owner and chief executive Joseph Kuzi was involved in the testing of the DiamaPen, claiming impressive results.
"The detection of fancy yellow synthetics is the easiest and fastest job for the DiamaPen,” he said. “The procedure takes a bit longer for colorless CVD synthetics, but in all cases the testing results are consistent and highly satisfactory.”
Kuzi said the laser pen was not a replacement for gem laboratories, but would still be a useful tool for assessing gems that may need a closer inspection.
“It gives you a hint that these diamonds should be looked at more thoroughly,” he said.
However, Tom Moses, the senior vice president of laboratory and research at the Gemmological Institute of America last week said that he was “a little sceptical” about the laser pen. He also said it was unlikely that a small scanning device would ever exist.
“I just don’t think that is going to happen,” Moses told a meeting of the Diamond Manufacturers & Importers Association of America.
An Australian expert agreed. Bill Sechos, principal of the Gemmological Study Laboratory, told Jeweller that while he wasn’t familiar with the DiamaPen, he would be surprised if such a cheap product could be effective.
“So far all the machines I've seen on the marketplace are quite expensive,” he said. “Compared to a $200 unit like that, at this stage I would highly doubt it's that simple.
“We have a Diamond Sure [in the lab], which works on ultraviolet and investigates absorbents and lower wave lengths,” he added. “I’ve never seen anything that says you can do it with a laser.”
Sechos agreed with Moses that a small and cheap synthetic diamond tester could probably not be produced at the moment, but is not ruling it out later.
“To be able to tell whether [a stone is] synthetic or not is a little more sophisticated than shining a laser through it,” he said. “But who knows what will happen with technology in the future.”
Diamond labs reassure industry
Posted June 26, 2012