Lucapa Diamond Company (ASX: LOM) has discovered more large diamonds at its Lulo diamond project in Angola.
The diamond explorer today announced the recovery of a 116-carat diamond, making it the tenth +100 carat diamond to be recovered from Lulo since mining operations began two years ago.
The company also found a 43-carat yellow gem, the largest coloured gem-quality diamond to be recovered from Lulo to date, surpassing a a 39-carat pink diamond discovered in September 2016.
Although the 116-carat diamond is a low-quality boart (meaning opaque or imperfect) stone, Lucapa said it continued to “underline the special large-stone nature and potential of the Lulo diamond project”.
Lucapa operates the 3000sq km Lulo project in joint venture with Angola’s national diamond company Empresa Nacional De Diamantes and private partner Rosas & Petalas.
Lucapa’s asset portfolio comprises a few other projects, including its 80%-owned Brooking diamond project in Western Australia, where it also discovered more diamonds last week.
Assays from one drill core sample from the Little Spring Creek prospect at Brooking returned 119 diamonds, including seven macro-diamonds up to 1mm.
In addition, Lucapa holds a 70% interest in the Mothae kimberlite mine through an international tender run by the government of the southern African nation of Lesotho, which retains a 30% stake.
Lucapa is in the process of constructing a 150-tonne-per-hour diamond treatment plant at Mothae, with commissioning and production on track for the second half of 2018.
According to the company, previous trial mining has demonstrated Mothae’s ability to be a source of large and premium-value diamonds.
The company has been further encouraged by the recent recovery of a giant 910-carat diamond at the neighbouring Letseng diamond mine, located within 5km of the Mothae project.
According to London-listed owner Gem Diamonds Limited, the Letseng diamond is of exceptional quality and is believed to be the fifth largest gem quality diamond ever recovered.