Apr 23, 2019

Rio Tinto Discovers 28 Ct White Diamond at Argyle; Among Largest of its Kind in Mine’s History

Rio Tinto announced today that it recently discovered a 28.84 carat gem quality white diamond at the east Kimberley mine at Argyle, one of the largest gem quality white diamonds in the mine’s 35-year history. The diamond was recovered in March this year and has been named the Argyle Octavia™ in recognition of its beautiful octahedral shape.

The company said that the rough diamond will be sold by tender in Antwerp later this year.

Arnaud Soirat, chief executive of Rio Tinto’s Copper and Diamonds portfolio said, “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.”

Rio Tinto’s Argyle diamond mine, operating since 1983, is renowned as the world’s largest coloured diamond mine, with a much more sporadic production of large white diamonds. Since commencement of the mine in 1983, gem quality white diamonds greater than 20 carats have comprised around 0.00007 percent of Argyle’s production.

Andrew Wilson, General Manager of Argyle Diamonds said, “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.”

Pic caption: The Argyle Octavia™

Pic courtesy: Rio Tinto