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Articles from DIAMONDS BY CUT - BRILLIANT (ROUND) (285 Articles), PLATINUM JEWELLERY (50 Articles)











The diamonds were said to have been created by volcanic gases under pressure. Source: Sputnik/Alexander Lyskin
The diamonds were said to have been created by volcanic gases under pressure. Source: Sputnik/Alexander Lyskin

Volcano yields new type of diamond

A recent diamond discovery and technological advancements in outer space have exposed potential new metal and gemstone sources for the jewellery industry.

Geologists have reportedly discovered another type of diamond within the lava of the Tolbachik volcano, located on the Kamchatka Peninsula in Russia.

According to multiple media reports, the Russian Ministry of Science released a statement that read: “The solidified lava of the Tolbachik eruption [which occurred in 2012–13] carries within it a new and never-before-seen type of diamond ... According to the Russian geologists, these unique diamonds are not formed in the magmatic melt, but are created by volcanic gases under pressure and as a result of crystallisation under the influence of electrical discharges of lightning.”

The new stones, dubbed Tolbachik diamonds, were said to look almost identical to synthetic diamonds, ranging from 250–700 microns in size.

Several hundred diamonds were reportedly discovered from a small sample of solidified lava from the Tolbachik volcano, and were subsequently analysed and identified using electron microscopy and x-ray diffraction.

Asteroid mining
Dr Peter Diamandis, Planetary Resources co-founder and co-chairman
Dr Peter Diamandis, Planetary Resources co-founder and co-chairman

Meanwhile, astronomers from the US-based Slooh Community Observatory have recorded the passing of an asteroid, approximately one kilometre in diameter, that is believed to contain up to US$5.4 trillion (AU$7.3 t) in metals and minerals.

Reports have speculated that the 2011 UW158 asteroid may contain a core of platinum, the same material used in jewellery manufacturing.

The asteroid passed about 2.4 million kilometres away from Earth last month. This was only days after Planetary Resources, a US-based company established with the aim of developing asteroid mining technology, drew one step closer to achieving its goal with the successful deployment of a spacecraft.

It was said that during its 90-day mission, Arkyd 3 Reflight (A3R) would validate several core technologies that Planetary Resources planned to incorporate into future spacecraft, which could one day be used to identify and mine near-Earth asteroids.

“The successful deployment of the A3R is a significant milestone for Planetary Resources as we forge a path toward prospecting resource-rich asteroids,” company co-founder and co-chairman Dr Peter Diamandis said. “Our team is developing the technology that will enable humanity to create an off-planet economy that will fundamentally change the way we live on Earth.”

Planetary Resources has another demonstration spacecraft, the Arkyd-6, lined up for launch later this year to continue testing the company’s asteroid-mining technologies.  

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