words Alexa Wang
A Diamond is a precious stone consisting of a clear and colorless crystalline form of pure carbon, the hardest naturally occurring substance; they have over the years been used as a worldwide symbol of love and eternity. In more recent years, people in the UK have adopted the idea of paying tribute to the life of their deceased loved ones by eternalizing them into a gem form – A post burial alternative known as memorial diamonds.
Memorial Diamond: A Gem to Pass on in Your Family from Generation to Generation
A memorial diamond is a laboratory grown diamond created from the carbon content extracted from the cremated ashes of a deceased.
Memorial diamonds specialist companies like the Swiss LONITE, which also has a branch office in London, UK, uses HPHT technology in creating memorial diamonds in their state-of-the-art laboratories. The ashes are placed in a specialized crucible which is heated to over 5000F so that every element except carbon oxidizes. The temperature is raised further so that carbon can become graphite; the graphite with a metal catalyst and a diamond seed crystal are placed into the core which goes into a specialized diamond press capable of creating extreme tension. During the last stretch when the press is working, the temperature in the room stays about 2500F so that the ashes turned memorial diamonds become solid. Purification takes approximately 5,000 minutes for each memorial diamond ordered.
Memorial Diamonds are often offered to celebrate happy life events in the UK such as engagements party and weddings. Diamonds have for a long time been acknowledged as a symbol of love and eternity; as a result, modern families in the UK are in habit of cementing love, relationships and commemorating special life events with these precious gems containing the essence of a beloved departed one.
Memorial diamonds are also passed on in the family from generation to generation as a means of ensuring that the legacy of a dearly departed family member continues to live on in the hearts of the bereaved for generations to come.
A lot of people in the UK have embraced memorial diamonds after cremation due to its element of uniqueness. It is a very personal way to send off a departed loved one as opposed to simply storing their ashes in an urn at home forever.
How to Choose a Memorial Diamond to Honor Your Departed Loved-Ones?
A memorial diamond with a GIA certificate as proof of authenticity
Choosing a memorial diamond is a very personal choice which makes every memorial diamond selected very unique. Most importantly, you can choose to customize the memorial diamond ordered with as many personal traits of the deceased as possible such as their favorite color.
Why memorial diamonds grown in lab might be a better alternative to natural diamonds;
They are of personal attachment to you since they are made out of the ashes of your loved ones. Memorial diamonds provide a sense of physical attachment between the bereaved and their departed loved ones which in so doing empowers the bereaved against grief.
Memorial diamonds are relatively more affordable compared to natural diamonds. Memorial diamond prices depend on the size, the cut and the color of the gem ordered; memorial diamonds cost in the UK can range from £1400 to a little over £15,600. On the other hand, 1 carat natural diamond price range from $2,500 to $19,000 and 2 carat natural diamond prices range from $7,700 to $72,000.
They can be created over a short period of time as opposed to natural diamonds. Memorial diamonds are created in the laboratory over a period of 6 to 9 months as opposed to natural diamonds that are assumed to form in the earth’s crust over a billion years.
The general worry about blood diamonds in the natural diamond trade. Blood diamonds is a label given to natural diamonds that were mined and used to finance the civil wars in Central and West Africa. Memorial diamonds eliminate the worry about blood diamond trade.
The possibility of creating fancy colored diamonds in the lab: These are very rare, almost impossible to come across and are very pricy in the natural diamond trade; only one in 10,000 natural diamonds is a colored diamond. Memorial diamond specialists however can easily create the conditions necessary for their formation in the laboratory by adding or removing chemical elements in/from the gem.
Specialized memorial diamonds companies can deliver your memorial diamond from ashes with a certificate of authentication from external and well recognized institutes such as the GIA and IGI. This report contains a full scientific and unbiased assessment of your memorial diamond’s characteristics and its provenance.
Memorial Diamonds: A Growing Industry beyond Borders
The Issue of Cemetery Congestion
The growth of the memorial diamonds industry beyond borders like in Germany, Japan, the USA/Canada, Brazil and Chinese speaking countries is credited to the fact that people are looking for a permanent solution to the existing global funeral industry issues such as;
Cemetery congestion: The 2015 BBC survey projects London to run out of burial space completely in the next 20 years.
In Mexico, at the San Isidro cemetery in Mexico City, borough of Azcapotzalco reached full capacity in 2014 and people had to exhume their deceased to create space for the newly dead which was a traumatizing experience for the bereaved.
Insufficiency in urn storage companies: In Taiwan, two of their major columbaria reached full capacity while the FEHD in Hong Kong project a shortage of over 400,000 plots by 2023.
Storing cremation urns in space-saving warehouses also known as columbaria have also become expensive over the years. A case in point Ruriden Columbarium which houses over 2045 LED lit Buddha statues charges roughly $7,379.
Exorbitant funeral costs: The cost of a traditional burial in London starts from £5,529 and can go up to £20,000 for the most elaborated ceremonies.
In Japan, the average cost of a funeral is around $23,000 and these prices continue to skyrocket by over 50% every year; a case in point, the Aoyama cemetery in Tokyo charges $100,000.
In Germany, the average price of a funeral is between 5,000€ to 10,000€ and can go up to 20 000€ in certain case, which is almost double the average monthly income.
In Singapore, a proper religious funeral can cost you around $3,800 to $10000, which is sometimes beyond the capacity of the average incoming person.
Some Taoist funeral packages and other funeral service providers come to their aid. They offer affordable funeral packages with beautiful keepsakes made of metal lockets made of ashes, man-made gemstones, and artificial diamonds.
Environmental degradation: A cemetery burial releases 10% more carbon than what is released in a cremation ceremony in the long run; this increases the percentage of carbon dioxide in the air and undergrounds which in turn leads to suffocation of living organisms.
Cemetery burials also pollute the underground with embalming fluids, the coffin and tomb maintenance altogether.
Modern funerals in the UK today are more about personalization, inclusiveness and celebrating the life of the deceased as opposed to mourning. Memorial diamonds are an embodiment of both personalization and celebrating life through eternalizing the deceased’s legacy into a beautiful gem.