On Tuesday, Lucara Diamond Corp. trumpeted the news of its incredible haul of 100-plus-carat diamonds sourced at the famous Karowe Mine in Botswana. Of the 13 enormous diamonds, eight were reported to be of gem quality and two were larger than 200 carats.
Equally impressive is the fact that all of the scale-tipping stones were discovered since the start of the second quarter of 2014.
The Vancouver-based mining company noted that the largest gem-quality rough diamond weighed 259 carats, followed one at 239 carats, two at 153 carats and one at 133 carats.
Typically, a rough diamond will lose half its weight during the arduous cutting-and-polishing process. Still, the top-five Lucara rough diamonds should yield a newsworthy collection of faceted finished gems.
Although gems of these sizes are extreme rarities in the diamond world, they seem to have become more and more prevalent. This could be due to the new techniques employed by mining companies that have improved recoveries and reduced breakage of exceptionally large stones.
Typically, the ore containing the rough diamonds goes through many stages of crushing and processing before it can be sorted and classified. Although diamond is the world’s hardest material, it can be brittle. In the past, larger diamonds could be inadvertently fractured by the heavy machinery during processing.
The Karowe Mine in landlocked Botswana on the continent of Africa is one of the most prolific diamond-producing areas in the world, and is especially famous for yielding the largest diamond rough.
Since the beginning of the second quarter, the mine has produced 239 diamonds larger than 10.8 carats, including 27 diamonds weighing between 50 and 100 carats.
Members of the diamond trade have been invited to inspect and purchase these rough diamonds at Lucara’s Exceptional Stone Tender on July 18. Viewings will take place in both Antwerp, Belgium, and Gaborone, the capital of Botswana.
(Image: Lucara Diamond Corp.)