Testing of antique jewellery at SSEF may provide insights which go far beyond simple gem testing. They add valuable information to the jewel, starting from its design and craftsmanship in the making, the choice of colours and qualities of gemstones, or the facet arrangement and proportions of old cutting styles

Vanadium as a colouring element is quite often underestimated, mostly as it is often associated and acting together with chromium, a chemical element with a similar geochemical behavior and paragenetic occurrence but which is historically better known in the trade and easier to detect with simple tools (spectro

On the 8th of June 2023, the Estrela de Fura ruby was sold at Sotheby’s in New York for a world record price of US$ 34.8 million. This ruby of 55.22 ct was cut from a 101 ct piece of rough, discovered in July 2022 near Montepuez in Mozambique, in a mine operated by the Fura Gems company.

Recently, a beautiful Vietnamese ruby of 2.10 ct and vivid red colour was submitted to SSEF for testing. Microscopic observations and chemical trace element analysis confirmed its Vietnamese origin and our colour grading protocol revealed that this stone was well fitting to be called ‘pigeon blood red’ base

Having attended the IGC conference in Tokyo in October 2023, Dr. Michael S. Krzemnicki and Dr. Laurent E. Cartier took some time to travel south to visit the cultured pearl trading hub of Kobe and pearl farmers in Mie prefecture.