World’s largest new diamond mine starts commercial production

Gahcho Kué, owned by De Beers Canada and Mountain Province Diamonds, is now full steam ahead in production.

Gahcho Kué, co-owned by De Beers Canada and Mountain Province Diamonds, is located at Kennady Lake, about 280 km northeast of Yellowknife image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Canada’s Gahcho Kué mine, the world’s largest new diamond mine in the last 13 years, reached commercial production Tuesday, its owners De Beers Canada and Mountain Province Diamonds announced.

Located 280 kilometers northeast of Yellowknife, near the Arctic Circle, the mine is expected to produce around 54 million carats of rough diamonds over its 12-year lifetime.

Gahcho Kué was only the sixth diamond opened in Canada in the almost 19 years the country has been producing such gems.Production ramp-up at Gahcho Kué, a joint venture between De Beers Canada (51%) and Mountain Province Diamonds (49%), began in August — a month before the mine’s official opening.

Thursday’s announcement marks an important operational milestone and also comes slightly ahead of schedule, the partners said in a joint statement.

“Today marks a significant landmark for De Beers in Canada as Gahcho Kué becomes an important contributor to the group’s global production,” De Beers Group CEO Bruce Cleaver said in the statement.

The mine “secures Canada’s position as one of the world’s leading diamond producers,” added Patrick Evans, President and CEO of Mountain Province Diamonds.

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It’s estimated that Gahcho Kué will contribute $5.2 billion to the territorial economy until 2028, according to a socio-economic impact report prepared by De Beers.

Another reason why the mine’s opening is important for Canada’s economy is the fact that two of the country’s major diamond operations — Diavik and Ekati — are approaching the end of their productive lives. Gahcho Kué, although smaller than those mines, is expected to offset the production drop-off.

The mine, estimated to be one of the world’s 10 biggest diamond mines, is the sixth precious rocks operation opened in Canada in the almost 19 years the country has been producing diamonds.

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Henry Sapiecha

Another large diamond dug from Lulo mine in Angola… 227-carat white rough

Weighing 227 carats, latest gemstone from Lucapa’s Angolan diamond mine is its second largest to date

lucapa_227-carat-diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Big, valuable gemstones that may eventually get cut into smaller diamonds keep getting discovered in Angola.

Today Lucapa Diamond Company Ltd. (ASX:LOM) said it has uncovered yet another epic rock from its Lulo mine, the second largest to be pulled from deep inside the earth at Lulo.

According to Lucapa, the 227-carat stone was found in a new mining block, indicating that the entire 50-kilometre length of the Cacuilo River is diamondiferous.The stone weighing 227 carats, discovered by Lucapa and its partners, Empresa Nacional de Diamantes EP, and Rosas & Petales, is a Type IIa D-Colour gem. It’s the same type of diamond that Lucapa recovered in September, in that case weighing 172.6 carats. The largest diamond to come out of the mine was a 404.2-carat monster that Lucapa unveiled a year ago, and which Lucapa later sold for AUD$22.5 million. The huge rock bested Angola’s previous record for its largest diamond, the Angolan Star, a 217.4-carat gem recovered in 2007.

According to Lucapa, the 227-carat stone was found in a new mining block, indicating that the entire 50-kilometre length of the Cacuilo River is diamondiferous. The alluvial diamond area is among Lucapa’s 3,000 square kilometre Lulo concession, and has so far only been about 20% explored by Lucapa and its partners. The gem was discovered using a new XRT large-diamond recovery circuit recently installed at Lulo.

So far Lucapa has unearthed seven diamonds over 100 carats from the Lulo diamond project. Located 150km from Alrosa’s Catoca mine, the world’s fourth largest diamond mine, Lulo hosts Type IIa diamonds which account for less than 1% of global supply.

Angola is the world’s No.4 diamond producer by value and No.6 by volume. Its industry, which began a century ago under Portuguese colonial rule, is successfully emerging from a long period of difficulty as a result of a civil war that ended in 2002.

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Henry Sapiecha

Mountain Province just found this massive diamond at Gahcho Kué in Canada

This 67.87-carat gem quality octahedron diamond is the largest of its kind recovered to date at the mine. (Image courtesy of Mountain Province Diamonds)

mountain-province-just-found-massive-diamond-at-gahcho-kue-67.87-carat gem quality octahedron diamond, image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Mountain Province Diamonds (TSX:MPV), which holds a 49% stake in Gahcho Kué, one of Canada’s newest diamond mine and the world’s largest of its kind in the last 13 years, has just found a massive gem at the operation.

The 67.87-carat gem quality octahedron diamond is the largest of its kind recovered to date at the mine.The company said the 67.87-carat gem quality octahedron rock, unearthed during production ramp-up, is the largest gem quality diamond recovered to date at Gahcho Kué, which is one of the world’s 10 biggest diamond mines.

The company’s President and CEO, Patrick Evans, said production ramp-up at the remote mine, which is also the world’s highest grade new diamond operation, is progressing well despite some recent disruptions caused by extremely cold conditions during December that impacted the mine’s conveyor systems. He added that Gahcho Kué was on track to achieve commercial production on schedule during the current quarter.

Situated almost 300 kilometres east of Yellowknife, in Canada’s Northwest Territories, the mine opened up in September last year and has so far provided a $341 million (Cdn$440 million) boost to the territories’ economy. It has also contributed a further $272 million (Cdn$350 million) to the rest of Canada, according to DeBeers, which holds a 51% stake in the mine.

Mountain Province also announced that its second diamonds sale of the year will take place in Antwerp, Belgium, from February 20 to March 1.

First blast at Gahcho Kué diamond mine image www.worldwidediamonds.info
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Merlin Mines has just unearthed Australia’s fifth largest diamond

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Merlin Diamonds (ASX:MED) has unearthed Australia’s fifth largest diamond from its namesake mine in Australia’s Northern Territory, currently in the ramp up phase.

The company said the 35.26 carat brown diamond was among a number of rough gems found at its Merlin mine, including a 14.6 carat brown rock as well as a number of smaller white diamonds.

Shares in the company jumped 7% to $0.015 after the announcement.

Last month, the company found a very rare blue coloured diamond, believed to be the first blue gem produced at Merlin.

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The blue diamond found last month. (Image courtesy of Merlin Diamonds)

Blue diamonds are even more unusual than pink ones, normally found at Rio Tinto’s Argyle mine in Western Australia.

In June last year, a massive intense blue diamond, known as The Cullinan Dream, fetched $25.4 million at a Christie’s auction in New York, breaking all records and becoming the most expensive gem of its kind ever sold at auction.

Australia’s largest diamond, a 104.73 carat stone, was discovered at Merlin, which was run by Rio Tinto and Ashton Mining between 1999-2003, before being acquired in 2014 by Merlin Diamonds, formerly North Australian Diamonds.

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Henry Sapiecha

History Of Diamonds on video

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Diamonds are by far the most popular gemstones used in modern jewelry, but do you know where they came from?

Diamonds have been considered to be beautiful and very valuable for a long time. In the 1st century AD, a roman naturalist said that the “diamond is the most valuable, not only of the precious stones, but of all things in the world.”

The international love of diamonds started in India. They were trading diamonds as early as the 4th century BC. Eventually, they started trading to the Europeans, and became very popular among them by the 1400s.

In the 1700s, Brazil became a diamond-mining powerhouse.

The int 1800s, after the French Revolution, western Europe and the US became more wealthy and the demand for diamonds exploded.

By the 1900s, South Africa mined 90% of the world’s diamonds.

Recently, diamonds have been found in Australia and Canada.

Diamonds have truly withstood the test of time and will always be in fashion.

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Henry Sapiecha

Alrosa diamond sales less in October, but outlook is positive for the future

HANDLING-ROUGH-DIAMONDS image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Russia’s Alrosa (MCX:ALRS), the world’s top diamond producer by output in carats, said Tuesday that sales of rough gems dropped slightly in October, when compared to the previous month, though polished diamond sales remained unchanged.

Rough gems sales totalled $430.8 million in October, slightly less than the $435 million fetched in September, Alrosa said. Polished diamond sales came to $8.2 million.

De Beers, the world’s top producer by value, also reported Tuesday a drop in rough diamond sales —the lowest amount so this year.

But diamond producers are used to the up and downs in sales as they know the industry is seasonal, reaching its peak from November through to February.

Alrosa, which together with De Beers controls almost two-thirds of the diamond market, said earlier it intends to recover 1.7 million carats of diamonds a year from its Verkhne-Munskoye mine, which is slated to begin production in 2018.

The construction of that mine, which has 38.3 million carats of booked reserves, is part of a long-term development program that aims to increase Alrosa’s diamond production to 41 million carats by 2021.

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De Beers recent sale the lowest this year in less than shiny display

diamonds-in-the-rough-cluster-on-black image wwww.worldwidediamonds.info

Diamond giant De Beers, the world’s top producer by value, saw its sales of rough gems fall in its latest offering, but said results were in line with expected seasonal demand patterns.

The Anglo American’s unit sold $470 million of diamonds in the ninth cycle, compared with $494 million fetched at its previous sale.

“Encouragingly, the ninth sales cycle of 2016 showed continued good demand for De Beers rough diamonds, with sales in line with expected seasonal demand patterns,” the firm’s chief executive Bruce Cleaver said in the statement.

It sold $470 million of diamonds in the ninth cycle, compared with $494 million fetched at its previous sale.Rough-diamond prices have rebounded about 7.4% so far this year after De Beers and rival Alrosa reduced output in an effort to improve market conditions. Miners of the precious stone have been struggling due to weak demand and falling prices after global demand for diamond jewellery hit a high of $81 billion in 2014 and production soared, causing a supply-glut by 2015.

Russia’s Alrosa, the world’s top diamond producer by output in carats, also reported Tuesday a drop in rough gems sales.

De Beers, which currently has about 30% of the rough diamond market, began operations of at its newest mine in September. Gahcho Kué, in Canada’s Northwest Territories, is expected to contribute $5.2 billion (Cdn$6.7 billion) to the country’s economy and provide 1,200 new jobs.

This new operation as well as Stornoway’s (TSX:SWY) recently opened Renard mine in Quebec, are expected to add around 7 million carats annually to global production once fully operational, which is likely to affect prices, De Beers said in September.

De Beers sales for the year to date have reached $5.16 billion. The company was Anglo American’s largest profit driver in the first half of this year, accounting for about 40% of its underlying earnings during the period.

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Henry Sapiecha

World’s largest pair of pear-shaped diamonds could fetch up to $30m

worlds-largest-pair-of-pear-shaped-diamond-earrings-could-fetch-up-to-30m image www.worldwidediamonds.info

A newly created set of drop earrings featuring the world’s largest pair of pear-shaped diamonds, is expected to fetch up to $30 million when they go under Christie’s hammer in Geneva on Nov. 15.

The “flawless quality” rocks, weighing 52.55 and 50.47 carats, were made into earrings by Boehmer et Bassenge’s new boutique Maison de Haute Joaillerie, in Paris.

The piece of jewellery, named Miroir de l’Amour (Mirror of Love), will be sold alongside an exceedingly rare Fancy Vivid pink pear-shaped diamond ring, which is expected to sale for $16 to $18 million, the auction house said.

the-fancy-vivid-pink diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

white heart diamonds on white line

The Orange

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When it was auctioned in 2013, this diamond was the largest Fancy Vivid Orange diamond ever to have been discovered, weighing approximately 14.82 carats.

The gem, which sold for over $35.5 million — more than $15m above its high estimate — is also the largest Fancy Vivid Orange diamond ever graded by the Gemological Institute of America.

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The Winston Legacy

the-winston-legacy diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

On 15 May 2013 this exceptional pear-shaped gem — at 101.73 carats, one of the world’s most perfect diamonds — was the top lot in Christie’s record-breaking $102 million Geneva auction of Magnificent Jewels. It sold to Harry Winston for $26.7 million, setting a new world record at auction for a colourless diamond.

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The Blue

the-blue diamond www.worldwidediamonds.info

The world’s largest and flawless pear-shaped diamond set a fresh all-time record at a global auction for a blue diamond. It was sold to Harry Winston for $24 million — more than $1.8 million per carat — and it was rechristened as the Winston Blue.

The diamond industry has rebounded this year after Anglo America’s De Beers unit and Russian rival Alrosa axed supply in 2015. And while rough-diamond prices have gained over 7% this year, main actors such as De Beers have repeatedly warned the final months of the year could be more difficult.

white heart diamonds on white line

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Henry Sapiecha

World’s largest flawless heart-shaped diamond & this is it here

largest D Flawless heart shape diamond in the world image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Yes, they are a girl’s best friend. But, not every girl can get them and this particular gemstone is definitely a hard-to-get brilliant beautiful bountiful bling.

Graff Diamonds has just revealed in London its Graff Venus, the largest D Flawless heart shape diamond in the world, which weighs 118.78 carats and is the size of a walnut.

largest D Flawless heart shape diamond in the world image www.worldwidediamonds.info (2)

(Photo: Graff Diamonds).

This diamond has been described as a flawless type IIA with superb polish, excellent symmetry and nil fluorescence. These features are only accorded the top diamonds in the world.

The Venus heart shaped white diamond was cut from a 357-carat rough discovered at the Letšeng Mine in Lesotho in 2015.

It took 1.5 years for the stone to take shape, starting from the initial discovery, going through the analysis process and developing new technology to cut and polish the main diamond and the 22 other satellite stones yielded from the same piece of rough.

largest D Flawless heart shape diamond in the world study sketch image www.worldwidediamonds.info (2)

Will you be the lucky lady to receive this record-breaking superb white flawless heart-shaped gem? For now, Graff plans to showcase it around a number of countries before setting it as a jewel.

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Henry Sapiecha

DIAMONDS CAN BE FOREVER IN STORING DATA SCIENCE SAYS

data-contained-in-diamonds-could-stay-there-forever-too image www.worldwidediamonds.info

It’s said diamonds are forever and if the results of a new study published this week leads to a new, more practical use of the precious stones, data could also be stored on them, virtually forever.

According to a paper available at the journal Science Advances, diamonds can be used as a way to store vast amounts of data using atom-size flaws ordered in 3D arrays.

The authors, a team of physicists from City University of New York, used lasers to encode and read data on diamonds’ atomic-sized imperfections, known as a nitrogen vacancy centres.

They treated those minuscule spaces as magnets that could repel or absorb electrons and encoded simple gray-scale images, such as the faces of Albert Einstein and Erwin Schrödinger by adding an electron and taking another away using lasers.

data-storage-diamonds image www.worldwidediamonds.info

The scientists encoded images of Albert Einstein and Erwin Schrödinger on a diamond by adding and removing electrons with green and red lasers. (Image: Meriles Group, City College of the City University of New York)

The results of these experiments suggest that diamonds could be used to encode data in the form of negatively and neutrally charged defects, which lasers can read, write, erase and rewrite, the physicists said.

“With these advanced protocols, the storage capacity of a diamond would surpass what existing technologies can achieve,” the authors wrote in a blog. “This is just a beginning, but these initial results provide us a potential way of storing huge amount of data in a brand new way. We’re looking forward to transform this beautiful quirk of physics into a vastly useful technology.”

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Henry Sapiecha