Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Crater of Diamonds State Park

Arkansas teenager Kalel Langford, 14, hit the jackpot when he found a 7.44-carat diamond at the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Arkansas. The teen had only been at the park with his parents for 30 minutes when he spotted a shiny, dark brown gem.

The stone is the 7th-largest diamond found at the Arkansas State Park since 1972. Kalel found the diamond a few inches from a stream of water in the southern portion of the park’s diamond search area.
Crater of Diamonds State Park is a 911-acre (369 ha) Arkansas state park in Pike County. The park features a 37.5-acre plowed field ... the world's only diamond-bearing site accessible to the public.

The diamond-bearing soil in the search area is plowed periodically to help bring more diamonds to the surface.
The Arkansas Diamond Mine at Crater of Diamonds State Park has a policy of "finders, keepers," meaning the diamonds you find are yours to keep.

Diamonds were first discovered in 1906 when John Huddlestone found two strange crystals in the soil of his farm. His farm was right above a volcanic pipe filled with lamproite.

Word of the discovery spread and a "diamond rush" began. Soon thousands of people descended upon the Murfreesboro area, however, the Huddlestone farm and immediately adjacent land was the only location with promise of becoming a diamond mine. The diamond-bearing pipe was several hundred yards in diameter. There are other volcanic pipes in the area but they have yet to yield more than a few diamonds.
Prior to Huddlestone's discovery, geologists at the Arkansas State Geological Survey suspected that diamonds might occur in the greenish peridotite soils near Murfreesboro because they were similar to the soils above the African diamond deposits. They did fieldwork in the area but did not find any diamonds.
Since the park opened in 1972 there have been about 30,000 reported diamond finds. Most of the diamonds found are very small - too small for cutting into a mountable stone. The 30,000 stones reported have an aggregate weight of a little under 6,000 carats, making the average stone about twenty points (.20 carat) in weight.
Although most stones found are small, some spectacular diamonds have been found.

The "Uncle Sam Diamond", the largest diamond ever found in the US, was found there in 1924. This pale brown, 40.23 carat stone was found in 1924 by W.O. Bassum. It was cut into an emerald-cut gem weighing 12.42 carats which was sold in 1971 for $150,000.
The largest diamond ever found by a park visitor was a 16.37-carat white diamond found in 1975, named the "Amarillo Starlight".

The 4.25-carat "Kahn Canary" was worn by first lady Hillary Clinton at her husband's Presidential Inaugural galas in 1993 and 1997 as a special way to represent Arkansas's diamond site. The diamond's owner, Stan Kahn of Pine Bluff, Arkansas, loaned the diamond to Mrs. Clinton.
The "Strawn-Wagner Diamond" was found in 1990 by Shirley Strawn. This 3.09 carat stone was cut into a 1.09 carat brilliant-cut gem. A number of beautiful canary-colored diamonds have been found at the Park.

The 'Esperanza Diamond' may be the most valuable ever found at Crater of Diamonds.

"Okie Dokie Diamond" found in 2006 by Marvin Culver.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Kennady Diamonds Inc. - KDI.v

Kennady Diamonds Inc. - KDI.v focus is on 13 leases and claims located immediately adjacent to the De Beers/Mountain Province Diamonds joint venture property in Canada’s Northwest Territories.

The Kennady North Project is located 280 kilometres east-northeast of Yellowknife, NT in the District of Mackenzie.

On March 17, 2017 the company reported News

Kennady Diamonds Inc. (“Kennady”, the “Company”) (TSX-V: KDI) today announced that the Board of Directors of the Company have formed a special committee of independent directors (the “Special Committee”) in response to discussions with certain interested parties regarding a potential strategic transaction. The Special Committee, with the assistance of Minvisory Corp. as its financial advisor and Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP as its legal advisor, and the Company will consider and evaluate various strategic alternatives to maximize shareholder value, including continuing to execute on its existing business plan.


Sunday, March 26, 2017

The rush for cobalt in Cobalt, Ontario

There's a new gold rush underway in northern Ontario, but the demand is for a metal that is used in everything from smart phones to electric cars. More than a dozen mining companies are staking out claims in Cobalt, Ontario as price of the mineral with the same name rises.

The town of Cobalt is located along the Quebec border and is best known for the massive amounts of silver that were extracted a century ago.
The mining industry hasn't seen much action in the community for decades, but that's changing as demand for the metal grows. More than half the world's supply of cobalt is mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo in Africa, where child labor is common.

Booming town of Cobalt, 1906
A year and a half ago, a pound of Cobalt cost $10. Now it's more than doubled. Demand for the mineral is expected to double in the next 3-5 years.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Evidence of Viking 'Sunstone' Found

Ancient lore says the Vikings used special crystals to find their way under cloudy skies. Though none of these so-called "sunstones" have ever been found at Viking archaeological sites, a crystal uncovered in a British shipwreck in 2013 could help prove they did exist. The crystal was found amongst the wreckage of the Alderney, an Elizabethan warship that sank near the Channel Islands in 1592.
A chemical analysis confirmed that the stone was Icelandic Spar, or calcite crystal, believed to be the Vikings' mineral of choice for their fabled sunstones, first mentioned in the 13th-century Viking saga of Saint Olaf.

Today, the Alderney crystal would be useless for navigation, because it has been abraded by sand and clouded by magnesium salts. But in better days, such a stone would have bent light in a helpful way for seafarers.
The rhombohedral shape of calcite crystals refract light in such a way to create a double image. If you were to look at someone's face through a clear chunk of Icelandic spar, you would see two faces. But if the crystal is held in just the right position, the double image becomes a single image and you know the crystal is pointing east-west.

Researchers say the crystal could be used to determine the sun's location with an accuracy of one degree, even when it was invisible to the naked eye.