News at Project D: Follow step by step
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10 Years Dutch Diamond Technologies in High Tech industries
In 10 years after its establishment, DD has developed into a unique company where diamond is processed in products with applications in the High Tech industry. Apart from the many universities that we work with, our customer portfolio mainly consists of big names each in their specific field. We thank our relations for the trust they have given us and the fact that we have become this company, thanks to them.
It is now time for the next phase, a higher level. As our base we use monocrystalline diamond wafers with dimensions that were unthinkable before. DD would not be DD if we did not want to do something unique with the availability of this material. This product has been realized through the many techniques we have at our disposal and is a celebration of our 10th anniversary. It took us a whole year to successfully complete a product which is unique in its kind. We call it Project D.
If you want to see a diamond creation which has never been shown before, stay tuned with our frequently updates via our website or social media.
Final step 10
World’s first wearable lab-grown ‘all diamond’ ring
Dutch Diamond Technologies, based in The Netherlands, has made the world’s first ring that entirely consists of lab-grown diamond. It took them a year to manufacture it. This ring is one of a kind and was created in honor of the 10th anniversary of the company. The unique piece of jewelery symbolizes the innovative and high-tech techniques of Dutch Diamond Technologies in the diamond field.
The ring is made from a large piece of rough lab-grown diamond, as much as 155 carats. It takes four to five weeks for a diamond plate of this exceptional size to be grown. This is done in a laboratory of the German company Audiatec, where carbon atoms are evaporated under controlled conditions at temperatures up to 1300 degrees Celsius. Thereafter the rough diamond is polished with different techniques into a fantasy cut which reflects the light internally as much as possible, also called the diamond fire. The ring counts in total 133 facets and has a weight of 3,865 carats.
Human and environmentally friendly
Lab-grown diamonds are more environmentally and people-friendly than mine diamonds, but still have the same properties or even better. They are conflict-free, ecologically responsible and sustainable. The traditional diamond mining often takes place under heavy working conditions and it also causes high CO2 emissions. When growing diamonds in a lab, natural resources and environment are being saved. Additionally, CO2 emission is less, the production process is much shorter, the diamond is tailor-made and it has an ecological footprint as small as possible.
Dutch Diamond Technologies has been working with lab-grown diamonds for industrial high-tech applications for years. Recently, one of their products found its way to the jewelery market. For this occasion, the company worked together with the award-winning jewelery designer Marc Lange.
Lab-grown diamonds are increasingly being corporated in jewelery. Yet, there is a big difference with jewelery of gold or silver that are equipped with these diamonds. The ring that Dutch Diamond Technologies now presents is completely made of diamond.
Not every diamond is suitable for jewelery. If we look at the traditional mine diamonds, only 20 percent is suitable for making ornamental diamonds. The rest is used for industrial applications. However, the diamond we used for Project D is a lab-grown diamond of an exceptionally high optical quality.
A diamond with this clarity and lack of inclusions only gets its shine after careful polishing. To bring the diamond to life, also called the diamond fire, a balance has to be found between the right proportion and mathematically selected angles of the facets. Cut diamonds are available in different shapes, where the brilliant shape is the most well-known variant. When a rough diamond is not suitable for polishing the well-known standard shapes, it is the master’s hand and experience that must awaken the fire in the stone.
A standard brilliant cut counts 57 facets, but the design of Project D counts as much as 133 accurately polished facets. Although the form is completely different, this has resulted in a brilliant reflection which emphasizes the beauty of diamond. In our final step 10 we will reveal a unique product to which we have worked with a lot of passion for more than a year.
Last step we compared the growth direction of diamond with the structure of wood. As with woodworking, the material is brought into the desired shape with various tools. However, as diamond is the hardest material on earth, this could only be traditionally polished with this same hardest material. The discs on which the diamonds are polished are manually impregnated with diamond powder by our craftsmen themselves.
The in-house developed polishing benches we use for grinding and polishing, are each equipped with a ‘coarse’ disc for pre-grinding and a disc with a fine structure that is used for applying very sharp cutting edges or surfaces with an optical quality. For processing diamond spheres and big optical windows however, we work with specially developed recipes to ensure the best possible quality in combination with a high efficiency where each production stage has its own recipe. We even managed to compile a recipe without any diamond particles in it, still being capable to polish diamond to optical qualities.
For Project D however, we only used traditional techniques, with the exception of lasercutting. Using these techniques, we managed to polish more than twice the amount of facets compared to the well-known brilliant cut for our design. In the beginning of next week we will unveil our final design, but prior to that we will follow up our story with one of the last details in a couple of days.
Many disciplines and properties come together when polishing diamonds. Working with this expensive and fragile material requires a big amount of patience and craftmanship. Like wood, diamond has growth directions but the difference with wood is that diamond can’t be polished in every direction. It is therefore important that the basis for making the final shape is made during the pre-polishing process. A wrong assessment at the beginning can be disastrous for the next steps. After a best possible determination of the crystal orientation (growth direction), the diamond stone will be clamped into its custom tool.
For Project D we’ve chosen to involve our experienced diamond grinders for the manual polishing. At the moment the diamond comes into contact with the 320 km/h spinning grinding disc, the experience of the professional is necessary to further fine-tune the position of the diamond for polishing. Several senses play a role in this, as a professional diamond polisher examines the polishing behaviour by an interaction between feeling, hearing, looking and even ‘smelling’.After many hours of extreme concentration, the foundation for the next steps of our model was laid. These steps will be further highlighted in step 8.
Many people know about the rich diamond industry of Amsterdam in the past. However, persistent problems with the labor unions in the Dutch capital city were the cause that a part of the diamond jewelry production was moved to the unknown village Cuijk in the south of The Netherlands. Prior to this transition, the money in Cuijk was mainly earned in the agricultural sector. A number of these workers were selected on the characteristics of their hands and were trained by an Amsterdam master to become a diamond worker.
At the end of the seventies, many diamond jewels were polished in Cuijk until a certain amount of work was moved to low wage countries. In order not to endanger the existence of the factory, we were eagerly looking for new applications with diamonds and made our way into the high-tech industry. In the late eighties, developing the growth of lab grown diamonds was started in Cuijk. New products and diamonds required new processing methods as well. Step by step the traditional diamond processing techniques were replaced by modern techniques. One of the first was replacing the diamond sawery by diamond laser cutting.
This optimization trend has been continued and will still continue in the future. At DD Technologies, a spin-off from its traditional industry, we focus on processing large quantities of diamonds by means of advanced techniques and developed machines. For Project D however, we had to go back to our roots and use the old crafting techniques as well in combination with today’s techniques in 2018.
In the next steps we will not go back in time, but we’ll take you to the future with the craftsmanship of the past.
Diamond incoming QC
Working with and the editing of diamond is very time-consuming. It is therefore important to check the quality and possible deviations of the ‘rough’ material at the earliest possible stage, which requires years of experience. To be able to look into the rough diamond, two opposite surfaces are polished prior to the inspection. The quality will then be assessed on inclusions, chips, cracks and intrinsic stress by means of polarization microscopy. Depending on the quality of the stone, it will be assigned to a specific product group and approved for further processing.
Laser systems for cutting diamond
Within DD we have 4 operational laser systems. Like almost all our equipment, these have been designed to our requirements, resulting in unique properties. Two of these lasers have been built specifically to drill very small holes for different applications. The roughness we can achieve with this technique, eliminates the need for old-fashioned wire polishing. Think about cylindrical and conical shaped holes with a smallest possible diameter of 80 microns. For Project D however, we had to drill a hole which was huge in terms of diamond processing. In the next newsletter we’ll tell you more about that.
Rolling all over the world!
In 2008 Dutch Diamond started with the manufacturing of full diamond spheres. Nowadays, 10 years later, we are still the only company worldwide which is capable of making a perfectly round full monocrystalline diamond ball. In the meanwhile, many companies and institutes discovered our innovative way of thinking and have joined us not only as a customer, but as a partner as well.
Last newsletter we informed you about a side step to a completely different industry to illustrate our innovative character. One year ago we teamed up with Marc Lange, a highly appreciated Dutch jewelery designer and he was triggered by our products. Marc is someone who dares to step out of the traditional comfort zone and dares to work with new materials and products in his designs. The ring he created, is symbolic of his creativity and a reflection of how DD’s products go all over the world after 10 years existence.
We’re approaching the second half of our Project D campaign and it’s now time to start reveiling some previews regarding the production of Project D. We’ll chronologically highlight some moments towards the completion, which took one year in total for the DD team. In the next newsletter we’ll show our diamond incoming QC and our laser department.
Outside the box!
For the DD-Team outside the box thinking is a way of living and the very foundation of our existence. For every developer and engineer, new materials and techniques will bring up interesting challenges and opportunities. There will be a trigger to look beyond the horizon. In DD’s field of operation there are no standards, not even for the needed tools or equipment. Traditionally we have been forced to be self-sufficient and this has learnt us to think outside the box.
To give just one example for this way of thinking, we had a very interesting meeting with a well-known Dutch designer a couple of months ago. This man has won a lot of awards with his unique designs which often deviate from the standard. His creations even reached the Dutch Royal Family. A product of Dutch Diamond has been chosen for creating a unique piece of art. In our next mailing we will make a side step to a completely different industry. This industry as well will have to go along with the diamond material developments that are irreversible.
Big, bigger, biggest!
Two weeks ago we introduced you to the largest monocrystalline diamond plate ever made. This new technology for growing large volume diamonds has been combined with DD’s in-house developed processing and mounting techniques. Using this unique combination, we want to put diamond on the market as an accepted and accessible engineering material. We offer you the possibility to come up with solutions with diamonds in areas which were unthinkable before.
With this same possibility the idea for the base of Project D arose among the DD engineers. They felt they had to do something with the unique availability of this material. The idea designing a product which was never made before was born. This product reflects the skills and techniques of DD in all its facets. Many of these are the same techniques we use to make products for our customers on a daily base.
What happens when you give the best engineers and diamond crafters a unique piece of diamond material? Follow the DD team through our website and social media and experience how they deal with these possibilities!
Big, bigger, biggest!
The picture on the right shows a monocrystalline diamond wafer with a weight of 155 carats. Among other things, it is possible for us to make optical windows with a diameter of 30 mm out of this.
DD would not be DD if we did not want to do something unique with the availability of this material. At this moment we are approaching the final stage of a project that has never been shown before. This end product will be realized through the many techniques we have at our disposal. In the coming weeks, we will slowly reveal this amazing project via social media.
We call it project D
I would like to invite you to follow us in the coming time on a path that leads to a new future. A new future for diamonds and their applications. Applications that were not previously thought possible.
You can follow us on Linked Inn, Facebook, Instagram and of course via our website.
Dutch Diamond Technologies BV
Kovel 2, 5431 ST Cuijk, The Netherlands
PO Box 39
5430 AA, Cuijk, The Netherlands
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Dutch Diamond Technologies is a member of the Meyco Holding with their headquarters in Switzerland.