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At Antwerp, researchers have developed a fully automated diamond polishing technology and this will make the production process go 10 to 20 times faster than it did. The development was made by a unit of the Belgian trade organization Scientific and Technological Research Center for Diamonds (WTOCD).

The reveal of the automated polishing machine at AWDC

AWDC reveals the new automated diamond polishing machine – photo from David Legreve

It took over 10 years to develop this new equipment according to the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC). The automated polishing technology takes an hour and a half to carry out work that normally takes a manufacturer a full day.

“This discovery fundamentally changes the diamond-polishing process,” said Ari Epstein, CEO of the AWDC. “Today’s wages simply make it too expensive to conduct this labor-intensive job in our country. Fenix puts an end to this, and can therefore be a real game changer for the Antwerp diamond industry.”

Fenix, the name for the automated polishing machine, is also more accurate than manual polishing and takes each diamond its specific grain and crystal orientation into account.

Interested? The machine will be available to the public in September after various Antwerp based companies tested the technology.

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