Geologists have discovered the first new kimberlite pipe in over 20 years at the Gahcho Kué mine in Canada, shareholder Mountain Province reported Tuesday.
The find comes nearly three years after production launched at Gahcho Kué, a joint venture between Mountain Province and De Beers Canada. Mining is focused on three kimberlite pipes, and the new discovery — named Wilson after Canada’s first female geologist, Alice Evelyn Wilson — is located 200 meters from the Tuzo pipe.
While another kimberlite was identified around the mine last year, Wilson is the first with no connection to the existing portfolio, making it a distinct, new discovery, Mountain Province explained. The miner identified the first kimberlite deposit at Gahcho Kué in 1995, and De Beers found three others two years later.
“The discovery of Wilson demonstrates the high exploration potential of the Gahcho Kué joint-venture area,” said Mountain Province CEO Stuart Brown. “After a 20-year discovery hiatus, it confirms that we are on track for discovering new kimberlites in this region.”
The Wilson pipe was found during a drill-testing program, in which 480 diamonds were recovered from a 115.2-kilogram kimberlite sample. The largest stone was a 0.28-carat, colorless octahedral aggregate, Mountain Province reported. Geologists are now considering the potential value of rock from the Tuzo open pit previously discarded as waste.
Image: Gahcho Kué mine. (Mountain Province Diamonds)