There’s a ‘new’ form of synthetic opal circulating now, and some could be easily fooled with its apparent ‘potch’ lines.
Monarch Opal has begun appearing on quite a few online sites, with retailers selling it as Monarch Opal, but without mention of it being natural, synthetic or man-made. This is a problem, no doubt.
Previously, with synthetic opal or Gilson, the ‘opal’ was easily identified by a rather unnatural appearance (too bright, fine pattern etc). However, Monarch Opal has been created (by Jim Zachery, creator of the Zachery Process for Turquoise) to present as being as close to natural as possibly can be done, with very convincing patterns and ‘veins’.
There are no dyes used in the creation of this synthetic material, with it consisting of nano-silica grown, making each form different, with differing light diffraction patterns, much like natural solid opal.
This material has been tested by the GIA, and classified as synthetic opal (it is required to have the same composition as natural opal, except made in a laboratory/not created by nature). Smaller labs will certify these particular ‘opals’ as natural with polymer filling.
We just want to make you aware that here at Opals Down Under, we do not deal in synthetic/man-made opal, having sourced our own rough material, and cut on site.
However, as with most things, if this material suits your needs, then as long as you are aware as to what it is (and you love it), then often, that is all that matters.
*Information & image sourced from the article, ‘Monarch Opal – A New Man Made Synthetic Opal’, published on opalauctions.com, September 24th 2017.