Emeralds belong to the beryl gem family. This gemstone contains chromium and vanadium which helps to produce its vibrant color. The color of this gemstone varies according to its place of origin. The most sought after color for this gemstone is a slightly bluish green.
Emeralds often have inclusions such as fibers or tremolite rods. They may also have cracks or irregular color distribution which can make it appear cloudy. All of these internal stresses add to its sensitivity to pressure. The emerald cut or step cut prevents chipping and breaking of the emerald while protecting the stone from further damage. This cut also helps to intensify its color.
The best sources for emeralds are Colombia, Zambia, and Brazil. Colombian emeralds are pure green and have a small tint of blue. Brazilian emeralds are slightly lighter in color and are more yellow in comparison to Colombian emeralds. Zambian emeralds have a fine, deep green color and good clarity.
Hardness: 7.5- 8 Mohs
Specific Gravity: 2.69-2.80
Refractive Index: 1.57-1.59
Crystal Form: A hexagonal, prismatic structure with a vitreous luster.