Ashes to Diamonds, Dust to Dust
Image courtesy of Rinaldo Willy/Algordanza
“Rough Diamonds created from the ashes of human remains”
Globally there appears to be a growing fashion for using cremated human remains to create diamonds, giving a whole new meaning to ‘family heirlooms’.
Swiss company Algordanza sparked the trend, putting human ashes under high heat and pressure, creating surroundings that mimic conditions deep within the earth. whole new meaning to ‘family heirlooms’.
Rinaldo Willy, Algordanza’s founder came up with the idea about ten years ago and has now exported the service to 24 different countries. Growing with popularity, Algordanza see the ashes of about 900 people pass through their door yearly, with their relatives leaving with beautiful diamonds three months later. whole new meaning to ‘family heirlooms’.
Due to due to trace amounts of boron (an element involved in bone formation) in the body, the majority of ashes diamonds come out blue but occasionally they are white, yellow or close to a black colour. whole new meaning to ‘family heirlooms’.
Willy explains this phenomenon, saying “Every diamond is slightly different. It’s always a unique diamond.” whole new meaning to ‘family heirlooms’.
Image courtesy of Rinaldo Willy/Algordanza/ My Memorial Diamond
“A finished Blue Diamond, the colour due to the element Boron which exists in bones.”
Most of the orders recieived at Algordanza come from the relatives of the recently deceased, whilst they are noticing that more people are making arrangements prior to death, wishing to become diamonds that will last an eternity.
The process costs between $5,000 and $22,000, producing diamonds via a similar process to the creation of synthetic diamonds with the procedure outlined below: 1. The human elements (cremated remains) go through a chemical analysis 2. All non-carbon elements are dissolved leaving only raw organic carbon with variable traces of boron. (Boron levels dictate the color of the diamond) 3. The organic carbon is then converted into graphite. The graphite is then placed into a Diamond Press with a started diamond crystal. The graphite and starter crystals are subjected to 2700 F and 1,000,000 psi. The graphite then crystallizes off of the diamond recreating the same molecular structure as the starter diamond. 4. Once crystallized to the desired carat weight the contents are then removed from the press and the natural diamond crystal is cut from the rough diamond. The rough diamond is then cut down to the desired shape and the polished.
Image courtesy of Cremation Solutions
“The Ashes Diamond creation process”
This procedure imitates and subsequently compresses at least several hundred million years worth of diamond creation into a few months where the longer the process, the bigger the rough diamond will grow. With one diamond only requiring about a pound of ashes, one individual’s ashes will create about nine diamonds. Customers normally take these to jewellers to be made into rings and pendants After feeling fairly dubious about this process at first, on reflection we think ashes diamonds are a touching and beautiful way to preserve the memory of a loved one, creating a testimony to their life.
We know that diamonds are supposed to be a girl’s best friend, but now they can be a loved family member too. So the next time you hear the term “Diamonds are Forever”, just think, some really are life everlasting. What do you think?