The Mohs scale measures the hardness of select minerals. Hardness is the degree to which a gemstone resists scratches. It is determined by the strength of the chemical bonds between its atoms. The scale ranks minerals from one to ten, with ten being the hardest. Each mineral has the ability to scratch all of the minerals ranking below it. The Mohs Scale was originally devised by Friedrich Moh, a mineralogist, in Germany in 1812 to measure the hardness and scratch resistance of various minerals.
Diamonds are the strongest gemstone, ranked as a ten on the scale. They are often used as ring stones because they are not easily damaged. However, the scale is relative and therefore although the ruby and sapphire are ranked as nines, they are over four times softer than diamonds. Topaz, emerald, amethyst, zircon and aquamarine are the softest suitable ring stones with their rank ranging between seven and eight. All softer minerals are used for pins, earrings and pendants; this includes pearls, tanzanite and opal.
Here at Secret Sapphire, Monica Tsao, gemologist and jewelry designer, can help you to design a customized ring made of your favorite gemstones. Call us at 604-558-3638 to book an appointment or come in to 493 Davie St. to start designing your unique piece.
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