Diamond miner Lucapa Diamond Company (ASX: LOM) has unearthed a massive 128-carat diamond from its flagship Lulo alluvial mine in Angola, making it the twelfth sparkler measuring over 100ct recovered from the field to date.
The stone has been confirmed as a top-colour white Type IIa diamond and was discovered among Specials recovered recently from Mining Block 6 in the prolific Lulo diamond field, including a 7.5ct fancy purple pink gem.
This is great news for Lucapa, which earlier this month reported netting US$16.7 million (A$22.9 million) in a historic tender of seven large, top-quality Lulo diamonds, at an average price of US$33,530 per carat.
Together with its Lulo joint venture partners Empresa Nacional de Diamantes and Rosas & Petalas, Lucapa said it will include these latest discoveries in the next international tender, along with a 75ct Type IIa top-colour diamond recovered late last year and other special gems.
Earlier this month, the joint venture partners announced plans to further expand production at Lulo by more than 25% in 2019.
Also this week, Lucapa announced an exploration update from its 80%-owned Brooking diamond project in Western Australia’s West Kimberley lamproite province.
The company had launched an exploration program in October last year to follow up on significant micro and macro-diamond counts recovered from two holes drilled at the Little Spring Creek diamond discovery.
The program involved excavating a 100-tonne surface sample of lamproite material from the Little Spring Creek pipe, drilling other lamproite targets, as well as surface, outcrop and stream sampling.
A total of 11 diamonds weighing 0.284ct were generated from processing the Little Spring Creek bulk sample through a dense media separation unit at a Perth lab.
According to Lucapa, the results confirmed the diamondiferous nature of the lamproite but unfortunately the macro-diamonds recovered above the 1mm cut-off were “below the company’s commercial hurdle”.
The company said it is still awaiting micro-diamond results from another 220kg of samples taken from the Big Spring Creek lamproites and sent to a lab in Canada for analysis.
However, Lucapa is still optimistic that the Brooking project remains prospective for diamondiferous lamproite discoveries.
“While the trench sampling results indicate the Little Spring Creek lamproite body is unlikely to be economic, the Brooking project has been proven to host source rocks with extremely high numbers of diamonds,” the company stated.
“The primary sources of anomalous levels of diamonds and indicator minerals recovered from other distinct target areas within the Brooking project remain undiscovered,” it added.
Lucapa shares were sitting up 2.63% at $0.195 on today’s discovery by early afternoon trade.