It gets quite chilly in the northwest region of Canada but the diamond industry in the area is starting to burn red hot as a 552-carat yellow diamond was discovered in October.
The rough diamond was unearthed at the Diavik Diamond Mine, approximately 135 miles south of the Arctic Circle in Canada’s Northwest Territories, jointly owned by mining companies Rio Tinto and Dominion Diamond Mines, which made the announcement Friday. It is the largest diamond discovery in North America, far surpassing the previous record held by the 187.7-carat “Diavik Foxfire,” which was recovered at the same mine in 2015.
The gemstone, which measures 33.74mm x 54.56mm, was discovered while passing through the initial screening process at Diavik’s recovery plant. “Abrasion markings on the stone’s surface attest to the difficult journey it underwent during recovery, and the fact that it remains intact is remarkable,” the company said in a statement. “A diamond of this size is completely unexpected for this part of the world and marks a true milestone for diamond mining in North America.”
The diamond will not be sold in its rough form, Dominion said. Due to the significance of the discovery, the company will select a partner who will cut and polish the stone.
Dominion said it expects to achieve a significant main stone once the diamond is polished. It will contain the “Canadamark” hallmark showing that it was responsibly mined, natural and untreated.