Diamonds have always aroused emotions, fired the imagination, were and still are a synonym of luxury, good taste and refinement. The name comes from the ancient Greek word "adamas" and means invincible, indestructible, because Pink diamond is the hardest known substance found in nature. Honoré de Balzac said that "The diamond does not know its value," but calculations indicate that the global diamond market is now worth around $ 79 billion. It is estimated that the oldest diamonds are those from Australia - they are from 3 to 4.25 billion years old. Their value depends on the purity, the economic situation and many other factors. The average price of a diamond for one carat varies around $ 4,800 depending on the color, weight and shape of the stone. There are stones on the market that are priced at $ 1,000 per carat. Hence the Cullinan - the largest diamond known so far with 3106 carats, was worth - before the split - about twenty five million zlotys
Diamonds were discovered in Australia in 1850. Industrial-scale exploration and production began a hundred years later. In the Argyle region, a research team made up of mostly geologists had patiently scoured nearly the size of Texas for seven years. Objective? Large deposits, the exploitation of which would be profitable. The first success was recorded in October 1979 - the diamond was found in an anthill near Lake Argyle. As early as 1985, the diamond mine was working twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Seven years later, the production peak was reached - nearly 41 million carats. Since then, the average annual Pink diamond extraction in Australia is 35 million carats, half of which are industrial diamonds.
Color, purity and cut
A diamond is unequal to a diamond. The differences result not only from the mass of the stone, defined in carats, but also from three other basic factors: color, purity and cut, and the relationships between them. Of course, the larger ones and of the highest quality are the most expensive and gain value much faster. For every 10,000 diamonds mined, there is usually one stone that is naturally colored. Although the Argyle mine supplies about 90 percent of the world quantity of Pink diamond, the year-round production of stones would fit… in the palm of your hand.
Rare purple diamonds could barely fill a teaspoon. In turn, red, or rather ruby diamonds constitute less than 0.1 percent. Argyle mining operations. It is not fully known where their pink color comes from. Color is believed to be produced by extraordinary pressure below the Earth's surface known as plastic deformation. As pressure pushes the diamond closer to the surface, its structure changes, refracting light and producing a pink color. Violet ones contain trace elements hydrogen, nitrogen and nickel, which also affect their color. This compilation of pressure and added elements makes them unique and sets them apart from blue diamonds from other parts of the world.
The uniqueness of Argyle Pink diamond is their hardness and blue sheen under ultraviolet light. Some Argyle diamonds don't even have a chance to reach jewelers because they are bought by collectors and kept as a legacy for future generations.
Selection (un) natural
Australians control the next stages of processing and want to have control over the next stages of selling their diamonds. The first is the mechanical separation of large Pink diamond from small ones. The second is sorting in terms of color and shape. Third - valuation. Only the best go to cutting and polishing. They are sold in exclusive chains of jewelry stores in Australia or abroad through representative offices in Antwerp or Mumbai.
Each pink Argyle diamond of 0.15 carats or more is laser marked with a serial number. It is also certified, which confirms its origin and guarantees that the customer has bought something extremely rare. The process of preparing pink diamonds for sale is very long and tedious. First, the craftsmen discuss how best to bring out the brilliance and color of the stone. Their opinion is crucial because a poorly cut diamond can lose its color. Pink diamond are considered to be the hardest to cut: grinding them is said to be like cutting a knotty tree. Sanding the whites, on the other hand, is as easy as cutting butter.
The drying spring of Argyle
Over the next few years, Australia's Argyle mine, which accounts for 20 percent of the mining market, will close. Only three months ago, the largest white diamond of precious stone quality in the 35-year history of the mine was mined there. It is called Argyle Octavia and weighs 28.84 carats.
"This discovery ... confirms how remarkable the Argyle reserves are, which still provide us with natural wonders, even though the mine's resources are exhausted," said Arnaud Soirat, CEO of Rio Tinto's copper and diamond business, which owns the mine.
The Argyle mine is scheduled to close in 2020. The company intends to sell the Octavia diamond at an auction in Antwerp later this year. From the beginning of its operation, the mine has produced 800 million carats of rough Pink diamond. Each year, Argyle diamonds are auctioned ( Tender ), before touring the world during the exhibition round. It is the most exclusive diamond auction in the world. The stones are not available to the average buyer. The best 40-60 diamonds are revealed at private showings where potential buyers bid. Each diamond has a reserve price. Winning bidders receive the diamond. Everything indicates that prices will increase significantly in the future.
In about 60 years, most Pink diamond mines will be shut down and will cease to operate. In two or three decades, the places where this precious metal is bought will become the largest "mine" in the world.