It isn’t much to look at, is it? This piece of diamond rough recovered awhile back from the Lulo Diamond Mine in Angola, could easily be mistaken for a piece of broken glass by somebody who doesn’t know what to look for. But this is the diamond rough that dreams are made of, and looks very similar to the 90.31 carat, D-color, type IIa diamond rough crystal which was just uncovered by the Lucapa Diamond Company Limited who operates the alluvial mining operation known as the Lulo Diamond Project.
I suspect that this file photograph featured on Lucapa’s web site, is the biggest diamond recovered so far at Lulo, a 131.4-carat D color, type IIa gem, which was recovered from the same area in 2012.
Diamonds weighing more than 10.8 carats are considered to be special recoveries, since the company’s last update on September 22nd, this category of diamonds includes two eleven carat stones, and diamonds weighing 17.06 carats, 18.71 carats, 21.16 carats, 29.94 carats, 36.61 carats, and a whopping 56.52 carats. This is the stuff that dreams are made of if you ask me, and just the sort of Crafted by Infinity diamond that I dream of night after night. The largest CBI diamond that I’ve yet to see weighed just over six carats, I think that holding a 90 carat piece of diamond rough might cause me to drool all over myself uncontrollably, but I’m willing to risk the embarrassment.
Alluvial mining operations are those which tend to focus on the banks of riverbeds, where diamonds flow with the current, and deposit themselves in holes in the riverbed. It’s the kind of mining that the gold miners of the California Gold Rush used to do, and discoveries such as this make me want to grab a pie pan out of the cupboard, throw on my bathing suit, and go for a dip in the river! Not anywhere near Angola mind you, but they find diamonds in a field in Arkansas all the time, and there are plenty of diamond mines operating in Canada at the moment. Do the math, I’m located somewhere in between those two places… I’ve got as much chance of finding a large piece of diamond rough while swimming in the river, as having somebody give me one. Might as well work on my tan.
Photo courtesy of Lucapa Diamond Company Limited.