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• In mineralogy, diamond (from the ancient Greek αδάμας – adámas "unbreakable") is an allotrope of carbon, where the carbon atoms are arranged in a variation of the face-centered cubic crystal structure called a diamond lattice
• The name diamond is derived from the ancient Greek αδάμας (adámas), "proper", "unalterable", "unbreakable, untamed“. • The popularity of diamonds has risen since the 19th century because of increased supply, improved cutting and polishing techniques, growth in the world economy, and innovative
• Diamonds can be identified by their high thermal conductivity. • Their high refractive index is also indicative, but other materials have similar refractivity. • Diamonds can scratch other diamonds, but this can result in damage to one or both stones.
• Approximately 130 million carats (26,000 kg (57,000 lb)) of diamonds are mined annually, with a total value of nearly US$9 billion, and about 100,000 kg (220,000 lb) are synthesized annually. • Roughly 49% of diamonds originate from central and southern Africa, although significant sources of the mineral have been discovered in Canada, India, Russia, Brazil, and Australia. •
• They are mined from kimberlite and lamproite volcanic pipes, which can bring diamond crystals, originating from deep within the Earth where high pressures and temperatures enable them to form, to the surface. • The diamond supply chain is controlled by a limited number of powerful businesses, and is also highly concentrated in a small number of locations around the world.
• In some of the more politically unstable central African and west African countries, revolutionary groups have taken control of diamond mines, using proceeds from diamond sales to finance their operations. Diamonds sold through this process are known as conflict diamonds or blood diamonds.
List of diamond mines
• Africa • Angola
– – – –
– Catoca diamond mine – Fucauma diamond mine – Luarica diamond mine Damtshaa diamond mine Jwaneng diamond mine Letlhakane diamond mine Orapa diamond mine
• South Africa
– Baken diamond mine – Cullinan diamond mine (previously "Premier mine") – Finsch diamond mine – Kimberley, Northern Cape – Koffiefontein mine – Venetia diamond mine
• Asia • Russia
– Mirny GOK – Udachny GOK
– Golkonda – Kollur Mine – Panna – Bunder Project
• North America • Canada
– – – – – –
• United States of America • Australia
Diavik Diamond Mine Ekati Diamond Mine Jericho Diamond Mine Snap Lake Diamond Mine Victor Diamond Mine Gahcho Kue Diamond Mine Project
– Crater of Diamonds State Park – Kelsey Lake Diamond Mine – Argyle diamond mine – Merlin diamond mine
List of diamond mining companies
• ALROSA, operating mainly in Russia • BHP Billiton, 80% owner of the Ekati mine • Camphor, 4.9% owner of Gahcho Kue Diamond Mine Project • De Beers, owner of 20 mines in Africa, 70% owner of the Northwest Territories Snap Lake Diamond Mine Project, 100% owner of Ontario's Victor Diamond Mine Project, 60% owner of the Northwest Territories' Gahcho Kue Diamond Mine Project and participant in numerous joint ventures worldwide • Debswana, a partnership between De Beers and the government of Botswana • Endiama, the national diamond-mining company in Angola and exclusive concessionaire • Harry Winston Diamond Corporation, 40% owner of the Diavik mine
• Petra Diamonds, operates in five African countries, mines include the Cullinan, Koffiefontein and Williamson mines, also the sole operator of the Alto Cuilo project in Angola. • Rio Tinto Group, partial owner of Argyle, Diavik (60%), and Murowa diamond mines • Tahera Diamond, owner of the Jericho mine in Canada
De Beers and the various companies within the De Beers Family of Companies are in the diamond, diamond mining, diamond trading and industrial diamond manufacturing sectors. It is by far the largest company in all these categories. De Beers is active in every category of industrial diamond mining: open-pit, underground, large-scale alluvial, coastal and deep sea. Mining takes place in Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Canada.
• Cecil Rhodes, the founder of De Beers, got his start by renting water pumps to miners during the diamond rush that started in 1871, when an 83.5 carat diamond was found on Colesburg Kopje (present day Kimberley), South Africa.
• De Beers Investments is the privately held, ownership company of De Beers Societe Anonyme (DBSA), and is registered in Luxembourg. It is made up of three shareholdings: Anglo American plc has a 45% shareholding, Central Holdings (the Oppenheimer family) has a 40% shareholding, and the Government of the Republic of Botswana owns 15% directly.
The Economic Value of Diamonds
• Why are Diamonds very expensive and Water very Cheap? • We note that total utility of water, that is its life giving benefit is indeed much higher than that of diamonds. But also as we have noted, price is directly related to marginal utility rather than to total utility •
• This means that the higher the marginal utility, the higher the price and the lower the marginal utility, the less the price, clearly there is every reason to expect the marginal utility of water to be very low while the marginal utility of diamonds to be very hence their corresponding prices • Indeed water is extremely plentiful in many parts of the world, so its price should generally be very low. •
• On the other hand, diamonds is very scarce, implying that less quantities of diamonds will be consumed by any household. • Therefore the marginal utilities of diamonds is very high and so consumers are willing to pay higher prices for diamond, than for water.
The Economics of Diamonds
• Q: How did diamonds, which are a relatively common mineral, become so expensive? • A: The supply of diamonds to the market is tightly controlled and restricted by a powerful diamond cartel: DeBeers Consolidated Mines Ltd. DeBeers is a South African firm with an office in London as its main distribution operation for selling rough stones, at nonnegotiable prices to diamond wholesalers, only ten times a year.
• "The diamond industry sells $60 billion of jewelery alone each year. For generations it has been run by De Beers as a cartel. The South African firm dominated the digging and trading of diamonds for most of the 20th century. The system for distributing diamonds established decades ago by De Beers is curious and anomalous
• Step #1: Take a relatively common mineral of compressed carbon,artificially restrict the supply and distribution of that mineral by means of a powerful and ruthless cartel, and charge consumers an artifically high price, way above the true market price. • Step #2: Pursue an aggressive worldwide marketing campaign to deceive people into believing the myth that diamonds are somehow "special and scarce," when that specialness andscarceness are completely man-made and artificial, carefully created and orchestrated by the DeBeers diamond cartel.
The Different Uses of Diamonds
• - cutting and grinding tools such as drill bits and saws - abrasives that cut and polish other materials, including other gemstones - fine engraving tools with detailed precision - coatings for files - semiconductor coatings and materials for microchips and computer processors. - laser components for precise and durable optical equipment - windows that are used to cover openings of lasers, x-rays and vacuum chambers - speaker domes that enhance the performance of high quality speakers - heat sinks to conduct heat away from sensitive parts of high performance microelectronics - low friction micro-bearings placed in tiny
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