Sunday, October 21, 2018
Lifestyle

Removing the jewels from the ground below

Diamond mining has occurred throughout the world for many years and depending on the depths the diamonds are situated along with the geology of the area, will determine what mining method is used. Diamonds are used for a variety of different items including machinery and medical equipment along with the more obvious jewelry items like a Diamond Engagement Ring that you can find at https://www.comparethediamond.com/

As a result of some types of mining having a detrimental impact on the local environment and economy, there have been a number of laws and regulations imposed on the mining of diamonds. These regulations have been designed and implemented in order to protect and conserve the environment of the local area, its economy and to protect the lives of local residents. Regulations also surround the protection of water sources and ensuring that once the mines are no longer in use the environment that has been disrupted is returned back to a suitable state.

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There are essentially three mining methods that are used for extracting diamonds from the ground.

Open Pit – most of the large diamond mines that operate throughout the world started as open mines. Some of them still work at some level in this way. This is usually the most cost-effective way to mine diamonds. A hole (shaped similarly to that of a carrot) is dug into the ground and the soil removed and sent for processing. Sometimes the ground is soft enough to remove through digging alone and on other occasions explosives are needed to break up any large rocks that are present. These open pit mines are located near to the center of a kimberlite pipe.

Underground – many of the open pit mines move over to underground mining once the depths they have reached become too dangerous and no longer cost-effective to mine in an open pit way. Underground mining can actually extend the life of a diamond mine in terms of is production by between ten and twenty years.

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Alluvial  – this is where natural erosion of the entrance of a kimberlite pipe has taken place usually by river systems. The sediment is carried to other locations. Diamonds are found in the sediment and also in the water system near to the kimberlite pipe entrance. This type of mining is difficult and very labor intensive and is a system that has gained much criticism as there has been very little legislation governing this type of mining and many people have lost their lives indirectly linked to alluvial mining.