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A Gem of a Robot

An Israeli company has invested over $2 million to design and produce a robot capable of cutting and polishing colored gem stones. According to Ilan Weissman, managing director of the Sarin Research and Development Co. which has produced two prototypes, the new “Robo-Gem” fully automated system works better than the skilled human hands which have been cutting and polishing precious stones from time immemorial.

“Robo-Gem” is especially good with emeralds and may be adapted later for processing diamonds, one of Israel’s chief exports.

Weissman says the robot cutter saves up to 90 percent of costly rough stones. Between 60 and 85 percent is currently lost in the cutting. The company has not yet decided whether to make it available outside Israel.