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Russia Reveals Existence of Vast Diamond Field Containing “Trillions of Carats”

18. September 2012 by Dasha 0 Comments

When people think of Russia, vodka, borscht, and beautiful women often come to mind. But diamonds? Not so much. However, that may soon change thanks to the discovery of a huge diamond field in eastern Siberia.

The field, located under a 35-million-year-old, 62-mile diameter asteroid crater known as Popigai Astroblem, reportedly contains enough diamonds to supply the global market for 3,000 years. The Russian government discovered the diamond field sometime in the 1970s, but kept quiet in order to preserve the profits of the USSR’s diamond operations in Mirny.

Over the weekend, however, Russian authorities chose to declassify the news by allowing scientists from the Novosibirsk Institute of Geology and Mineralogy to discuss the field with Russian journalists.

"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," Institute director Nikolai Pokhilenko told a Russian news agency. "We are speaking about trillions of carats. By comparison, present-day known reserves in Yakutia are estimated at one billion carats."

Despite the declassified finding, diamonds from the asteroid site won’t appear in jewelry stores anytime soon. The super-hard gems are best suited for technological purposes, not rings, and Russian scientists expect corporations and scientific institutes to be the field’s biggest customers.

Christian Science Monitor