Saturday, October 6, 2012

Russia's Motherload of Industrial Diamonds

Russia's Motherload of Industrial Diamonds
 
Bad news for some, great news for many many others. Russia is on the brink of driving the artificial diamond industry full out of business and in the process accelerating the cutting, grinding and hi-tech electronics industry. Who will suffer the worst from all this? Why the De Beers, who through their Element Six subsidiary whose main plants are in China, Germany, Ireland, Sweden, South Africa and the UK. All of this is due to the declassification of a 1970s Soviet find in the Siberian wilds: the Popigai crater. The 100km wide crater was created by an impact 35 million years ago and in turn, the impact transformed the local coal deposits into impact diamonds, which are an industrial class diamond.
 
Natural industrial diamonds differ from gem quality diamonds because they are of poor quality for gems, having cracks or being merky or very small in size. Of these, world wide, there are 27,000 kg mined every year. A further 6.76 million kg of artificial diamonds are created world wide, this represents a 35 billion carats. Natural diamonds vary in price between $2.50-$10 per carat, depending on size, while artificial diamonds vary between $.40 and $2.00. Industrial diamonds are normally used as extremely high quality abrasives and cutting edges. As well, industrial diamonds are finding a new use in the manufacture of computer chips and electronics heat sinks, polishing circuit wafers, hard drives and high quality lenses for lasers. In both cases, a hard break on this has been the cost and supply of both natural and artificial industrial diamonds.
 
Popigai breaks all this. According to the Russian Academy of Sciences, there are several trillion carats of diamonds and they have proven to be of extremely high quality. How much of a break through is this? Well, lets do the math: the scientists said several trillion carats, but we'll take just 1 trillion, that's 12 zeros. So 1 trillion divided by 35 billion carats per year, that comes out to 28.6 years worth! And that's just 1 trillion, where there maybe several, so say up to 5, which would translate into 143 years worth of diamonds. In other words, even if demand, by way of electronics increases by 5 fold, this one mine would provide the whole of the world for 28.6 years! If we take this at $.50/carat in today's dollars, that's a value of some $500 billion to $2.5 trillion, depending on the actual size of the deposit. Even at a use rate of double today's demand, at $.50/carat, that's an extra $35 billion per year and an effective unrestricted supply will more than just double demand.
 
This one crater is worth as much as the Sakhalin oil fields. A stunning secret finally come to light. Makes one wander what else is kept in the top secret files.

2 comments:

magooey said...

The Good Lord has blessed you with abundance. May you use these gifts well.

Juniper in the Desert said...

Russia is the largest country/land mass on earth; I am sure there are some more amazing resources. Not including the oil in the Arctic.