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Diamond Origin Verification

Guaranteed Tracking of Diamonds from Mines to Market
Tobias Schultz, Director, Research and Developmentphone icon510.452.6389 Email
Diamond rings

Conscientious consumers demand to know the origin of the diamonds they purchase. Many distributors and retailers are turning to new technologies that promise to trace diamonds from mine to market, using either block chain software or outdated and limited testing technologies. While such efforts are a step in the right direction, SCS testing methods are the only technology that can truly guarantee full traceability of any diamond back to its source.

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  • Verification all the way back to the mine itself, based on cutting-edge laboratory technology
  • Provides assurance that diamonds are not derived from conflict zones
  • Allows consumers to learn about each diamond’s provenance
  • Reinforces distributor and retailer goals and market claims
  • Easily integrated with existing traceability systems
  • Can be applied to grown diamonds as well
  • Verification is a necessary stepping stone to full Sustainable Choice certification
  1. What is the laser testing technology used for certification? How new is it? How reliable?
    SCS’s technique relies on the use of a powerful and focused laser beam which is used to create a laser inscription in a diamond. In this process, a sample of atoms and molecules from the surface of the diamond is removed and transformed into a plasma. The cooling plasma then emits light on different parts of the spectrum, making it possible to analyze and determine the structure and composition of the diamond. This technology has been used for provenance determination for several years, and has demonstrated very high accuracies using samples secured from mines and labs around the world. The average per-diamond accuracy is 99.7% and will be further improved as more diamonds enter the system.
  2. How does it differ from testing based on X-ray Fluorescence?
    X-ray fluorescence is a test with an inherently low sensitivity, limited to detecting some elements at very high impurity levels. This means it cannot be used to determine the origin of a cut diamond, which has extremely low impurity levels. Only laser testing can determine the origin of a cut diamond.
  3. Why is the laser testing technology more reliable than block chain traceability?
    Block chain is a digitized form of the paperwork currently used to trace diamonds, which is rife with problems. Because there is no physical link between a block chain record and a diamond, fraudulent claims about a diamond’s origin can be fed into the system, corrupting the entire block chain. Additionally, the block chain cannot trace a cut diamond back to its rough form and therefore origin, as when a rough diamond is cut, any physical “signature” recorded is destroyed. Very similar diamonds can also be substituted for one another on the block chain, opening up another avenue for fraud. Block chain is also subject to hacking through a synchronized attack, and the existing block chain systems are not truly decentralized, meaning their records could be subject to intentional fraud.
  4. Does this traceability testing only apply to mined diamonds?
    This technology can also establish the origin of grown diamonds.

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Tobias Schultz, Director, Research and Development phone icon 510.452.6389 Email Tobias

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