All fancy colored diamonds have nitrogen, hydrogen, or boron content and can be found naturally in colors of yellow, brown, blue, and pink. Some diamonds that have been exposed to radiation will have a green color. Fancy colored diamonds, however, do not possess the color changing characteristics that make the chameleon diamonds such a unique rarity in the world of diamonds. The best way to determine whether your diamond is a chameleon or not is to submit it to the gemological laboratory (GIA, HRD, IGI, EGL).
Chameleon diamonds when viewed under different light and temperature conditions change their color. When a natural chameleon diamond is exposed to the intense heat (about 250 C) it changes its usual greenish color to yellow or olive color, of course the color change is temporary in fact just for a few minutes. Chameleon diamonds mainly contain grayish, yellow-green, and olive color. The larger the chameleon the more evident the change in color.
This is the only natural diamond that has thermochroism and photochroism characteristics.
Where are chameleon diamonds found?
Chameleon diamonds mainly come from South African mines, though Australia’s Argyle mine is also known as the source of the natural chameleon diamonds.
The first written record of the chameleon diamonds goes back to 1943, even though they had been on the market for a long time prior to this. Only few were aware of the unique feature that they change their color. As a result of this these diamonds were sold at a regular price. As people became aware of this special characteristic their demand and price eventually increased.
What are they generally used for?
Natural Chameleon diamonds are mainly used as center stones for three stone and solitaire rings and pendants.
Here are the most common color variations for chameleon diamonds:
Fancy Green Yellow, Fancy Greenish Yellow, Fancy Deep Green Yellow, Fancy Deep Greenish Yellow, Fancy Deep Brownish Greenish Yellow, Fancy Deep Brownish Green Yellow, Fancy Brown Greenish Yellow, Fancy Grayish Yellow Green, Fancy Grayish Yellowish Green, Fancy Deep Grayish Yellow Green, Fancy Deep Grayish Yellowish Green, Fancy Deep Greenish Yellow, Fancy Grayish Greenish Yellow, Fancy Grayish Green Yellow.
Famous Chameleon Diamonds
- The biggest chameleon diamond ever found is around 30.00 carat.
- Radiant 8.04 ct., a truly amazing diamond, graded by the gemological institute of America (GIA) as fancy dark grey green chameleon was evaluated due to its size, beauty and uniqueness up to US $2,100,000.
- In 2001, a platinum chameleon diamond ring over 4 carats was sold for $240,000 at a Hong Kong auction.
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