Previous month:
May 2005
Next month:
July 2005

57 posts from June 2005

Firestone Diamonds sees major S.Africa mine by 2007

London-listed Firestone Diamonds said on Thursday it hoped to start building a major new diamond mine in South Africa as early as 2007 after signing a joint venture with the world No.1 producer De Beers last week.

Firestone Chief Executive Philip Kenny told an investor and press briefing that its Groen River project on the west coast, north of Cape Town, was one of the most attractive alluvial diamond projects in the world.

"The diamonds are a large average size and very high quality. This has the potential to be a world-class producing area," Kenny said.

Diamond prices have soared in recent years: demand from established and emerging markets is strong and miners have struggled to find the world's next sizeable deposit as extra supply from the sale of De Beers' stockpile has dried up.

The deal announced on Tuesday, gives De Beers a 61 percent interest in Groen River in return for financing the project up to the completion of a bankable feasibility study.

A joint De Beers-Firestone team will now speed up exploration of the 500 sq km site that potentially contains millions of carats of diamonds worth billions of dollars, Kenny said.

Firestone should have the first exploration results by the end of this year and have finished secondary testing by the end of next, he said. A detailed study to hammer out plans for a mine would then take another three to six months.

"We would be there or thereabouts by the end of next year. We would go into production almost immediately," said Kenny, adding that a relatively simple, shallow mine would only take around a year to build.

Diamonds have been mined on the west coast of South Africa since 1925.

Unlike many of the world's biggest diamond mines which tap concentrated deposits inside extinct volcanic pipes, diamonds on South Africa's west coast were carried there by ancient rivers rising in modern-day Botswana and Namibia, and are scattered widely across gravel deposits.

"Any one of these features is big enough to put a mine on," said Kenny, pointing to a number of ancient bends and pools on now-extinct rivers where diamonds are most likely to have settled.

"There will probably be multiple mines in the area. It's basically the last unexplored river system on the west coast."

The deal is the fourth that Firestone has signed with De Beers in the last 12 months, aiding sentiment towards the junior miner, worth some 70 million pounds.

"There's been a high degree of scepticism about Groen River. Signing up with De Beers is giving the project credibility it didn't have before," Kenny said, adding that as far as he was aware it was the first joint venture De Beers had ever signed on an alluvial project.

"I think you can see the relationship with De Beers continuing to expand."


Namibian president lashes out at De Beers

"It's my first time to address you but I feel I should be frank," a startled Nicky Oppenheimer heard on Tuesday. He was in Windhoek to witness the launch of Diamdel Namibia, a wholly owned subsidiary of the De Beers Group of companies.

Also present was Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba, who made the feelings of the Swapo leadership clear on job losses and unemployment.

Namibians felt that more diamonds should be prepared in Namibia for the international market, and not outside the country.

"We view our diamonds as a natural endowment bequeathed to our citizens. They are a national heritage that must be used to improve the livelihood of our people, especially those who are living in difficult circumstances," said Pohamba.

Read the rest of the story at http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1&click_id=68&art_id=vn20050630110601180C404189


Digging for Diamonds

MURFREESBORO, Ark.-One hundred million years ago, a volcano exploded in Arkansas, leaving behind a legacy of diamonds.

Deep within the earth, gems were formed and were carried to the surface through lava. Now visitors from all over the world tromp to the crater to comb through the 37 1/2 acres of plowed land in the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Southwest Arkansas.

With the exception of a small visitor's fee, the park is the only public mining field in the world where people can search all day and keep whatever gems they find, regardless of value.

"We can't promise visitors a diamond, but we can guarantee them quality family time and a unique experience with nature," said Bill Henderson, assistant superintendent of the park.

The Crater of Diamonds State Park has recently undergone many enhancements for the enjoyment of park visitors.

The latest addition is a 3,900-square-foot Diamond Discovery Center that will serve as a gateway to the park's diamond search area.

"The new facility will enhance the total experience of diamond hunting. The building is more customer friendly," said Bill Henderson, assistant superintendent of the park.

The Discovery Center is designed to add to the visitor experience at the park by helping people understand diamonds and how to search for them. Exhibits include the diamond hunters' hall of fame and features information about the notable diamonds that have been unearthed at the crater.

Read the rest of the story at http://www.texarkanagazette.com/articles/2005/06/29/local_news/news/news01.txt


Beach 'diamonds' fake

Police in the Indian city of Mumbai (Bombay) have urged people not to believe rumours that a suburban beach is awash with diamonds.

Hundreds of people had descended on the popular Juhu beach since the rumours started on Saturday, some scouring sand through the night by torchlight.

But police said the "gems" were just glass or stones.

One man drowned there a few days ago. Witnesses said he was one of the diamond hunters but police denied this.

A senior police officer, Amitabh Gupta, told the BBC the so-called diamonds found by fortune hunters were worthless.

However, the BBC's Zubair Ahmed in Mumbai says some people have managed to sell them to gullible tourists.

Local jewellers have confirmed the stones are not diamonds.

Juhu beach is one of the most popular in Bombay and is visited by hundreds of tourists from across India every day.

"We heard people found diamonds on the beach," Dhruv, a 15-year-old newspaper seller, told the Reuters news agency.

"So I came here with my friends and we have found more than 50 diamonds which we managed to sell."

Some reports said the "gems" had fetched up to 1,500 rupees ($34).

Police warned it would be dangerous for people to venture out too far, particularly during high tide.

Some of the hunters believed the "gems" were loot that was lost in the Arabian sea.


Beach 'diamonds' fake

Police in the Indian city of Mumbai (Bombay) have urged people not to believe rumours that a suburban beach is awash with diamonds.

Hundreds of people had descended on the popular Juhu beach since the rumours started on Saturday, some scouring sand through the night by torchlight.

But police said the "gems" were just glass or stones.

One man drowned there a few days ago. Witnesses said he was one of the diamond hunters but police denied this.

A senior police officer, Amitabh Gupta, told the BBC the so-called diamonds found by fortune hunters were worthless.

However, the BBC's Zubair Ahmed in Mumbai says some people have managed to sell them to gullible tourists.

Local jewellers have confirmed the stones are not diamonds.

Juhu beach is one of the most popular in Bombay and is visited by hundreds of tourists from across India every day.

"We heard people found diamonds on the beach," Dhruv, a 15-year-old newspaper seller, told the Reuters news agency.

"So I came here with my friends and we have found more than 50 diamonds which we managed to sell."

Some reports said the "gems" had fetched up to 1,500 rupees ($34).

Police warned it would be dangerous for people to venture out too far, particularly during high tide.

Some of the hunters believed the "gems" were loot that was lost in the Arabian sea.


DiCaprio Seeks The Blood Diamond Role

Leonardo DiCaprio is in talks to make Warner Bros. dramatic thriller The Blood Diamond his next picture, says Variety. Ed Zwick (The Last Samurai), who will direct, rewrote the film with Marshall Herskovitz.

The African adventure is set in Sierra Leone circa 1999, a time when the nation was in the midst of a horrific civil war. DiCaprio would play the role of a smuggler who specializes in the sale of "blood diamonds," also known as "conflict diamonds" -- the precious stones used to finance rebellions, privateers and terrorists.

When the smuggler encounters an indigenous Mende farmer whose young son has disappeared into the RUF's army of child soldiers, the two men's fates become linked.

The studio is hoping to shoot "Diamond" early next year, so that DiCaprio can turn to another Warners project, For Whom the Bell Tolls. He is currently filming Martin Scorsese's The Departed.


Three drown during `search for diamonds'

MUMBAI-INDIA: After three persons drowned in the last couple of days while reportedly searching for diamonds on Juhu beach in North West Mumbai, police on Tuesday appealed to the public to stay away as there was no treasure on the shores.

However, Deputy Commissioner Amitabh Gupta said the three had died in high tides when they had gone for a swim.

He said there was no truth in reports that diamonds were found on the beach and people should keep away as the sea was rough.

More police personnel had been deployed as there was a mad rush of treasure hunters at the beach following reports that diamonds had been found there.

Police were having a tough time ever since rumours spread last week that precious diamonds had been found on the beach.

Read the rest of the story at http://www.hindu.com/2005/06/29/stories/2005062913471900.htm


Cultured Fancy Colored Diamonds

Diamonds of the new century - cultured fancy colored diamonds - is the product of New Age Diamonds Inc. that consolidated under this brand a Russian former space lab where HPHT method for producing synthetic gem-quality diamonds originally was developed and applied - and all representative branches.

That is not just one more company trying to amaze the world and unshakeable diamond empire - but the powerful manufacture with wide scope of production where 120 unique high-capacity machines are producing orange, vivid yellow and greenish diamonds, grown in lab but having all chemical, physical and optical properties of real diamonds - and their attraction.

After years of research based on the Russian scientists' investigations with purpose to obtain gem-quality cultured diamonds, as well as the diamonds for technical needs in the field of microelectronics, and innovation of technology New Age Diamonds is ready to enter the market with a new company strategy that includes positive concept of joy-gems.

"Our aim is not to conquer the stable and respectable diamond market, - Mr.Shulepov, the president of New Age Diamonds said, - but to find the new one for our synthetic diamonds, the special niche that definitely exists. The reason to buy New Age Diamonds is obvious - they are as beautiful as real fancy colored diamonds, they have their brilliance and fire - but the price is times less."

Rich intensive colors of these stones give the unique possibilities for contemporary design of jewellery - affordable adornment for new generation, open-minded and new fashion oriented people who don't have any prejudices and can value the beauty and the purity of New Age Diamonds.

For more information: http://www.newagediamonds.com

Learn more about colored diamonds at http://www.diamondsourceva.com/Education/ColoredDiamonds/ColoredDiamonds.asp


How to Buy Diamonds

Buying a diamond can be one of the most exciting, confusing, rewarding and nerve wracking experiences in your life, especially if the diamond is for an engagement ring that marks a lifetime of commitment and love.

When shopping for diamonds, educating yourself as a diamond consumer is very important. The more you know about diamonds, the more likely you will get the best diamond. Here are some key points to focus on when shopping for diamonds.

What is your budget? You should know your target budget and also what the "absolute maximum" amount you can afford before you walk into any store and before the emotion of shopping takes over.

If you are shopping for a gift such as an engagement ring, pay attention to what kind of rings or jewelry your girlfriend's family, friends and associates wear. If the sisters have one carat diamond engagement rings, you have just added a valuable piece of information to the diamond buying equation.

The easiest way to shop around when buying a diamond is to look at online retailer first. Read about shapes, color, clarity, carat weight, cut, costs and certifications. Don't feel like you have to become an expert but you want to become comfortable with the terminology so you will know what questions to ask.

At this point in the process you need to focus on determining which shape is the best of the diamond shapes for you. If this is going to be a gift, this is the one thing you really need to get some feedback on from the gal. Don't make a mistake and get the one shape she really dislikes. Even if this is going to be a surprise, you can get some input in a subtle way so make that your new mission.

Now you need to go look at some diamonds in person. Check out several stores and see if you can see the differences between color grades and clarity grades. See what diamonds have the most sparkle and brilliance and collect information on those diamonds. Remember you are still in the education phase so don't give in to high pressure sales. It is very unlikely the best diamond for you is any you have just examined.

The next step is to conduct some online shopping to get a feel for what diamonds cost. We recommend using the diamond price calculator at www.DiamondSourceVA.com. This is a tool that lets you quickly find the estimated price for various combinations of shapes, color, clarity, and carat weights.

Determine what the best quality of diamond is going to be for you. Keep in mind the size factor for your girlfriend's family and social circle. What combination of color, clarity and carat weight are going to make you and your happiest? Remember that you have to balance that with the budget you targeted at the start of this process.

There are many diamond retailers who would like to sell you a diamond. You have to determine which one is going to be able to provide the best diamond at the best price and do that in a professional, comfortable and responsive manner. You probably have numerous local jewelry options and hundreds of online retailers that all claim to be the best. Find the diamond experts who tell the truth, are responsive to your questions and can search the entire wholesale market for the best diamond value meeting your requirements.

Once you have purchased the best diamond, you still need to transform it into a ring. If your girlfriend has not given you explicit directions on exactly what setting she wants for the ring, we recommend presenting it in a simple solitaire mounting. You can then let her have an active role in picking the ring she will love to have on your finger for many years and it will show her how you value her opinion and involvement. There are tens of thousands of different ring styles and it is very unlikely that you will find the one that she likes the best without her involvement.

Before you present the diamond, be sure to get the ring or piece of jewelry insured. You want the person who is wearing it to enjoy it and that means you need the piece of mind that comes with proper insurance. Store warranties are not the same as insurance and are often worthless when it comes to replacing a lost, stolen or damaged diamond so get your diamond jewelry properly insured.

Last but not least, make sure you present your diamond gift in a manner that she will remember for years to come. You have worked hard to follow the guidelines and have purchased a beauty diamond so don't drop the ball now. Spend the appropriate time and energy to make the presentation worthy of the gift and the person receiving it.

This advice for shopping for diamonds was presented by http://www.diamonds-advice.com/buying-diamonds.htm


Diamonds are an electronics gem

Japanese researchers have for the first time n-doped a (001) diamond substrate, a development which could lead to diamond being used in a range of electronic applications.

The (001) indices refer to the orientation of the crystal plane through the diamond structure, and while p-doping the commercially useful (001) diamond is relatively straightforward, n-doping has proved tricky, with only (111) diamond successfully treated.

The researchers, at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Tokyo, have also shown UV emission from a device based on a p-n junction built on the (001) substrate.