AGTA’s New Lab

Gem Identification Goes High-Tech Jewelers routinely buy and sell laboratory-grown gems like synthetic amethyst or stones with inscrutable enhancements like irradiated pink tourmaline, never quite knowing the true nature of what they’re dealing in. Some consider the problem unavoidable and little cause for concern. Yet, owing to the risk of lawsuits over misidentification and nondisclosure, more jewelers today are turning to professional gem labs for accurate identification. For years that task has gone to the Gemological Institute of America’s Gem Trade Labs in New York and Carlsbad, Calif., as well as overseas labs in Geneva, London, and Bangkok. Equipped with state-of-the-art gem-identification technology, these labs have labored to keep up with growing demand. Smaller labs have tried to pick up the overflow, but few can afford the sophisticated equipment necessary to make con

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