Moissanite was discovered over 120 years ago by Nobel Prize-winning French chemist, Dr. Henri Moissan. He was looking for crystalline chemical compositions ideal for efficient electrical conductivity. During the search, Dr. Moissan discovered silicon carbide—a remarkable and extremely rare mineral— in a meteorite crater in Arizona. It was then named “moissanite” in his honor.
Dr. Moissan spent the remainder of his life trying to recreate his extraordinary finding but never succeeded.
In the late 1990s, researchers from the Research Triangle Park in North Carolina developed and patented a process for creating pure silicon carbide (SiC). This was used in the development of diverse products that included semiconductors, LED lighting and extremely hard drilling tools and abrasives.
It was then that the vision and innovation of Charles & Colvard—the original creator of moissanite—came to fruition. The process of producing moissanite is lengthy, taking two to three months to create a single gem.