A recent find at Rio Tinto’s Argyle mine in Australia is being hailed as one of the largest gem-quality white diamonds recovered in the site’s 35-year history.
The 28.84-carat stone, dubbed ‘Argyle Octavia’ in recognition of its octahedral shape, was discovered last month in the east Kimberley mine.
“We are delighted with this discovery which is a testament to the extraordinary Argyle orebody that continues to deliver these miracles of nature, even as it nears the end of mine life,” said Arnaud Soirat, copper and diamonds chief executive for Rio Tinto.
Regarded as the world’s largest coloured diamond mine, Argyle sees sporadic production of large white diamonds. Since commencement of the site in 1983, gem-quality white diamonds greater than 20 carats have comprised around 0.00007 per cent of the mine’s production, reports Rio Tinto.
“Argyle Octavia is unique in its size, shape, and beautiful provenance, and will take its place in Argyle’s history as one of a few special large white diamonds ever to be produced from the mine,” said Andrew Wilson, Argyle Diamonds’ general manager.
The rough diamond will be sold by tender in Antwerp later this year.