We all want to hang on to our loved ones forever, and this company allows you to do just that.
Using science, Eterneva transforms loved ones’ ashes into diamonds – giving the chance for families to grieve the loss of beloved family members – humans or animals – in their own way and time.
Diamonds are forever, and what better way to commemorate a loved one than by turning them into a precious gem? Both ashes and diamonds are made up essentially of carbon, and Eterneva gives people a chance to always have a part of their loves ones by their side.
Natural diamonds are formed under extreme pressure and temperature 150 miles underground in the Earth’s core. Millions of years of geological and volcanic activity push diamonds to the surface.
Highly valued as symbols of eternal love, they are heavily mined and fetch high prices. Manufacturers have since learned to replicate the natural process of producing diamonds.
General Electric became the first to do so in 1954, using elemental carbon to create diamonds in a laboratory. Manufactured diamonds then became commercially available in the 1980s.
More recently, companies have started including ashes into the process, providing a meaningful way to keep loved ones close by. Four elements comprise the human body – oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, and carbon.
The first three are gaseous, thus cremation renders the body mainly into carbon content that can be purified into the building blocks of diamonds.
Pressed between two plates at extremely high temperatures in a laboratory, the ashes crystallize around a diamond fragment, allowing it to develop into the precious stone.
Based in Austin, Texas, Eterneva is one of a number of companies that offer this thoughtful service to families, who can choose the size and shape of their gem memorial.
They can be specific about the color as well – a bit of nitrogen can create a yellow diamond; boron can develop a blue diamond; and irradiation procedures can craft red, green, and black hues.
Ensuring that nitrogen does not infiltrate the diamond incubator results in colorless diamonds.
Adelle Archer, co-founder and Chief Executive Office of Eterneva, makes sure to document the whole process of creating the diamonds from the ashes of loved ones.
She says that designing and monitoring the production, from ashes to diamonds, has had a profound effect on the grieving process of family members. Eterneva gives clients the opportunity to track each step of process, and hand delivers the final product whenever possible.
“We just obsess over the experience. This is not just a memorialization process. This is something that will help you heal,” Archer said.
Eterneva’s customers are usually those who feel they lost their loved ones too soon. One woman lost her father right before he was set to walk her down the aisle.
The diamonds provide some comfort, and allow clients to maintain a close connection with their loved ones.
It’s important to note though, that these diamonds are far different from natural stones. Typically they are composed of 10% of carbon from the cremated ashes, while the remaining 90% is generic stock carbon.
These are incorporated to streamline the process and ensure lower rates of contamination by other minerals. With just half a cup of cremated ashes, and the addition of generic lab carbon, Eterneva can create up to eight different diamonds.
These come at a cost as well, typically amounting to prices starting at about $3,000. If cremation is not an option, some companies can source the 10% carbon from a handful of hair.
Ultimately, there are ever expanding ways of remembering those who have passed on. Some may opt for green burials, which do not use caskets or embalming chemicals, as a more environmental way of celebrating their loved ones. Diamonds created from the ashes of loved ones, however, are more portable and durable compared to an urn.
At a time when science is vitally important in this pandemic age, it again offers a way to allow love to shine, particularly for those who have left way too soon.