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Russia reveals shiny state secret: It's awash in diamonds

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  • Russia reveals shiny state secret: It's awash in diamonds

    Trillions of carats' lie below a 35-million-year-old, 62-mile-diameter asteroid crater in eastern Siberia known as Popigai Astroblem. The Russians have known about the site since the 1970s.

    Moscow

    Russia has just declassified news that will shake world gem markets to their core: the discovery of a vast new diamond field containing "trillions of carats," enough to supply global markets for another 3,000 years.

    The Soviets discovered the bonanza back in the 1970s beneath a 35-million-year-old, 62-mile diameter asteroid crater in eastern Siberia known as Popigai Astroblem.

    They decided to keep it secret, and not to exploit it, apparently because the USSR's huge diamond operations at Mirny, in Yakutia, were already producing immense profits in what was then a tightly controlled world market.

    The Soviets were also producing a range of artificial diamonds for industry, into which they had invested heavily.

    The veil of secrecy was finally lifted over the weekend, and Moscow permitted scientists from the nearby Novosibirsk Institute of Geology and Mineralogy to talk about it with Russian journalists.

    According to the official news agency, ITAR-Tass, the diamonds at Popigai are "twice as hard" as the usual gemstones, making them ideal for industrial and scientific uses.

    The institute's director, Nikolai Pokhilenko, told the agency that news of what's in the new field could be enough to "overturn" global diamond markets.

    "The resources of super-hard diamonds contained in rocks of the Popigai crypto-explosion structure, are by a factor of ten bigger than the world's all known reserves," Mr. Pokhilenko said. "We are speaking about trillions of carats. By comparison, present-day known reserves in Yakutia are estimated at one billion carats."

    The type of stones at Popigai are known as "impact diamonds," which theoretically result when something like a meteor plows into a graphite deposit at high velocity. The Russians say most such diamonds found in the past have been "space diamonds" of extraterrestrial origin found in meteor craters. [Editor's note: The original version misstated the type of deposit needed to create impact diamonds.]

    They claim the Popigai site is unique in the world, thus making Russia the monopoly proprietor of a resource that's likely to become increasingly important in high-precision scientific and industrial processes.

    "The value of impact diamonds is added by their unusual abrasive features and large grain size," Pokhilenko told Tass. "This expands significantly the scope of their industrial use and makes them more valuable for industrial purposes."

    Russian scientists say the news is likely to change the shape of global diamond markets, although the main customers for the super-hard gems will probably be big corporations and scientific institutes.
    Russia reveals shiny state secret: It's awash in diamonds - CSMonitor.com

    Not sure, whether this is a serious information or just a hog-wash.

  • #2
    ITAR-TASS has a report on it, should make it official.

    http://pda.itar-tass.com/en/c154/521362.html

    It's not really that new though, at most revelation of the size of the deposit is new:

    Diamonds from the Popigai impact structure, Russia

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    • #3
      It sounds like these are industrial diamonds, which will not affect at all the market for gemstones.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Chogy View Post
        It sounds like these are industrial diamonds, which will not affect at all the market for gemstones.
        That hasn't stopped the idiot denizens of the Internet from demanding to know if they'll be able to purchase a cheap diamond ring now.
        “Never let yourself be persuaded that any one Great Man, any one leader, is necessary to the salvation of America. When America consists of one leader and 158 million followers, it will no longer be America.”
        ― Dwight D. Eisenhower

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        • #5
          Special grey diamonds - extra hard... Get yours today! Only 99.95 a carat! Diamonds maybe in multiple, irregular pieces and are uncut
          sigpic"If your plan is for one year, plant rice. If your plan is for ten years, plant trees.
          If your plan is for one hundred years, educate children."

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          • #6
            I use diamond paste in my workshop all the time as a slurry abrasive. I think the price is $20 or $30 for a carat weight in a syringe. There is also a thing called a "diamond dresser" which is a single big diamond on a steel shank, that is used to dress grinding wheels.



            These are amazing... you apply one to a big grinding wheel, and the wheel simply disappears under the diamond, with the diamond being untouched.

            The process for man-made industrial diamonds in that size (very, very small) is well established. Maybe the Russian cache is of larger sized stones. They are definitely valuable, but a different market than deBeers and the like.
            Attached Files

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            • #7
              What the Russian media hasn't disclosed is that Putin is actually going to go down there and personally dig up every single Carat for the glory of the motherland, right after he reintroduces dolphins into the Baltic.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by citanon View Post
                What the Russian media hasn't disclosed is that Putin is actually going to go down there and personally dig up every single Carat for the glory of the motherland, right after he reintroduced dolphins into the Baltic.
                Oh wow, he's already done it!

                Flipper Ahoy!: Dolphins Spotted in Baltic Sea - SPIEGEL ONLINE

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by TopHatter View Post
                  That hasn't stopped the idiot denizens of the Internet from demanding to know if they'll be able to purchase a cheap diamond ring now.
                  I am (not so) ashamed to admit this was my first question, too.
                  "The great questions of the day will not be settled by means of speeches and majority decisions but by iron and blood"-Otto Von Bismarck

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