Rio Tinto reflects on extraordinary people, spirit and innovation behind Far North Canada diamond mine.
Rio Tinto celebrates the extraordinary people, award-winning innovation, and pioneering spirit behind the 20 years of producing brilliant diamonds at the Diavik Mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories.
Discovered during the great Canadian diamond rush in the 1990s, Diavik began commercially producing diamonds in 2003. Over the ensuing two decades, Diavik has produced over 140 million carats of rough diamonds through a combination of surface and underground mining. Most of the diamonds recovered at Diavik are white gem quality stones, with a small quantity of yellow diamonds in the mix.
The diamonds recovered from this northern mine are prized for their high quality, brilliant internal fire, and Canadian provenance. However, it has been no small task to develop and operate a world-class mine well beyond the end of the road in an area of Canada where winter temperature dip to 40 degrees below zero.
The challenges for Diavik are compounded by the fact that the two-billion-year-old diamonds lie below a lake surrounded by permafrost. The safe and efficient development and operation of Diavik has required a combination of fortitude, finesse, and technology.
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