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HomeNewsHay River News177-carat rough diamond unearthed at Diavik

177-carat rough diamond unearthed at Diavik

Three diamonds from the Northwest Territories will travel to Europe and the Middle East to be showcased to diamond specialists from around the globe.

From left to right, a 177.71-carat raw diamond, a 24.82-carat yellow diamond and a 59.10-carat white diamond, all from Diavik Diamond Mine north of Yellowknife. Photo courtesy of Rio Tinto Photo Library.

Rio Tinto and Dominion Diamond Mines have revealed three of the finest large rough diamonds from Diavik diamond mine which will be presented to diamond specialists from around the world near the end of the month, Rio Tinto announced in a media release on Monday.

The Diavik Diamond Mine, which is 60 per cent owned by Rio Tinto and 40 per cent owned by Dominion Diamond Mines began production in 2003 and has been a fully underground mining operation since 2012.

The mine recently opened its fourth pipe which the company says will provide an incremental supply over the next four years to sustain production levels at the Rio Tinto operated mine.

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“Collectively known as The Diavik Stars of the Arctic, the three rough diamonds showcase a rare combination of size, quality and colour from the Diavik diamond mine in the remote Northwest Territories of Canada, 220 kilometres south of the Arctic Circle,” the media release states.

The diamond trio will headline Rio Tinto’s upcoming “Specials” Tender, which showcases rough diamonds over 10.8 carats.

At 177.71 carats, the diamond known as “Vega of the Arctic” is one of the largest and most valuable gem quality rough diamonds ever produced in Canada.

The discovery of a yellow diamond is also very rare, and the mine only produces an average of five a year, accounting for less than 0.001 per cent of its annual production.

“Diavik diamonds are over two billion years old and it has taken 15 years of production to unearth these extraordinary diamonds, underscoring the ongoing importance of the Diavik orebody in the context of the global diamond industry,” says Diavik Diamond Mines president and chief operating officer Patrick Boitumelo in a statement.

Diavik produces predominantly gem quality diamonds for high-end jewellery around the world.

The three diamonds will be showcased in Antwerp and Israel to large diamond specialists from around the world before bids close on October 25.

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