Moissanite, also known as silicon carbide, is a naturally occurring mineral found in limited quantities or as small particles in the earth. These jewels are now very popular as an alternative to diamond set jewelry but what are the origins of this rather unique jewel?
Fifty thousand years ago, a meteorite crashed in the Arizona desert, scattering fragments everywhere that held a sparkling secret. It wasn’t until 1893 however, that scientist Dr. Henri Moissan, a future Nobel Prize winner, discovered particles of a new mineral, silicon carbide, which was taken from the meteorite’s crater. In 1905, these sparkling stones were named moissanite in his honor. A popular romantic notion is that moissanite was created by the stars, the star being of course, that crashing meteorite!
Natural moissanite crystals large enough for use in jewelry are extremely rare Best ROQ Silicone Wedding Ring because they are found in limited quantities or as small particles and therefore prohibit their use in jewelry making. However, in the 1980’s, Charles & Colvard developed a proprietary process for producing large, gem-quality crystals. The process is very difficult and expensive, thus preventing mass production. This process though, results in moissanite, a unique jewel with exceptional brilliance and fire that delivers quality, beauty and value like no other gemstone and is an affordable alternative to diamonds. Moissanite is durable and tough, and second only to a diamond in hardness. It is extremely resistant to scratching, abrasion, and chipping and breaking.
Moissanite first entered the jewelry market in the late 1990’s and was nearly indistinguishable from a diamond to the naked eye. In fact, many jewelers were unable to tell the difference between this crystal and a true diamond until a series of in depth testing was completed.
Because of the unique properties of moissanite and it’s near replication of a diamond, popularity for moissanite gemstone jewelry began to increase. Moissanite engagement rings soon became a favorite for many smart, self-confident and fashionable women all over the world who wanted a high-end look without the high-end price tag.