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Colombian Emeralds

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Ultraviolet Lamp

Ultraviolet lamps are especially helpful in the identification of stones by taking advantage of one of the characteristics found in many materials, its ability to fluoresce, essentially, a change in color when exposed to ultraviolet radiation.

Use of ultraviolet lamps can aid in determining genuine specimens from their simulants, and natural gemstones from their cultured or manufactured synthetics.

In the case of emeralds, a natural and true emerald very rarely fluoresce when exposed to long-wave ultraviolet light, however their synthetic copies usually do. Further, emeralds that have been subjected to treatments intended to conceal defects in a stone are present. While treatments such as cedarwood oil are common in emeralds, there are some unscrupulous dealers that will overuse of such treatments to hide a severe crack or other defect. This is where the ultraviolet lamp comes in particularly handy.

It's worth noting that emeralds from the Hiddenite region of North Carolina do exhibit a slight fluorescence when viewed with short-wave ultraviolet light; such a characteristic is unique to these stones, and has not been observed anywhere else.


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