Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Gemstone of the Week: Zultanite

(Zultanite image found on

Zultanite is a beautiful gemstone and is the trade-name for colour-change Diaspore so while the name may be new, the gemstone is not at all new to the market having been discovered in 1801.  Diaspore has a harness of 6.5-7 which is quite good as that hardness is comparable to Tanzanite and Peridot. Diaspore has a vitreous or pearly luster and may be transparent or sub-translucent. In colour it may be white, colourless, brown, pale yellow, greenish-grey, lilac, pinkish, grayish-brown.  With colour-change Diaspore, the colour changes depending on if it is in natural/fluorescent lighting, incandescent lighting, or subdued lighting (think candles).  The colour-change will be more noticeable the larger the stone is. Diaspore is found in a great many locations spread across: Antarctica, Australia, Argentina, Austria, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Brazil, Burma(Myanmar), Cambodia, Canada, Chile, China, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mongolia, Morocco, Namibia, New Zealand, Norway, Papua New Guinea, Philippians, Portugal, Republic of Macedonia, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Spain, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Swaziland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Turkey, England, Scotland, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Zimbabwe, and the states of: Alaska, Arizona,California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Utah, Virgina, Washington, and Wisconsin. Zultanite, (gem quality colour-change Diaspore) can retail at between $500-$1,000 per carat, and I've even heard of prices going higher.  When buying Zultanite, be careful to make sure of the quality as non-gem quality colour-change Diaspore does not command the same value as the gem-quality Diaspore that retailers refer to as Zultanite.