What is Gemstone Transparency
Gemstones are transparent when it is observed from naked eyes. What we do to analyse complete qualities of gemstones? We analyse the minute details minutely but we know that even if we analyse it minutely, the first characteristics of gemstones is its transparency. Gemstone transparency isn’t precise basis for identifying gem species. However, there is presence and degrees of translucence in particular gem. These can leave a tremendous subjective appeal to collectors and it can also affect gem’s value.
When we will observe the atomic level of gem, it is known that gemstones absorb, transmit and reflect light of different wavelength. The wavelengths of visible light that a particular gemstone transmits are that we see with the naked eyes.
Opacity, Translucence, and Transparency
The wavelengths that a gem absorbs determine its opacity. The more wavelengths of light a gemstone absorbs or reflects, the more opaque it is. The more light a gem absorbs, means it transmits less light through it. A translucent gem has the capacity to transmit enough wavelengths of light that we can see light shining through it. But if the wavelengths of light that escape the gem are scattered, due to gem refractive index, light is we all see through the gem and we can’t see images beyond it. A transparent gem is translucent and it transmits light with little scattering.
Can We Measure Gemstone Transparency?
Scientifically, we can measure the opacity of a material, from perfect transparent to perfect opaque. However, gemologists normally use the common place of meanings of opacity, translucence, and transparency in gemstone. There is a wide range of transparency that exists even within a single gem species. Therefore, to determine a gemstone’s transparency we may not get help with identification. Precise measurement, in most cases is not essential. There are descriptions such as “near opaque,” “semi-translucent,” and “almost transparent”, that convey enough of optical effects to interest most people. Gemstone Transparency