The Australian pink diamond was fashioned when the supercontinent Nuna was splitting aside

Plate tectonic reconstructions showing the position of Argyle within the McArthur-Yanliao Gulf. Image credit: Olierook et al., doi: 10.1038/s41467-023-40904-8.

Whereas it’s identified that for diamonds to type there should be carbon deep within the Earth, and for these diamonds to show pink they should be uncovered to forces from colliding tectonic plates, researchers from Curtin College have discovered the third factor mandatory for diamonds to exist. Pink diamonds are at floor stage, continents that “unfold” throughout continental separation about 1.3 billion years in the past.

Plate tectonic reconstructions show the position of Argyle within McArthur-Yanliao Bay.  Image credit: Ollerok et al., doi: 10.1038/s41467-023-40904-8.

Plate tectonic reconstructions present the place of Argyle inside McArthur-Yanliao Bay. Picture credit score: Ollerok et alMon: 10.1038/s41467-023-40904-8.

“The overwhelming majority of major financial diamond deposits are discovered within the kimberlites of the Archean craton, with the attribute thick, historical continental lithosphere believed to be important for sustained diamond progress,” mentioned Hugo Ollerock, a researcher at Curtin College, and colleagues.

“Nevertheless, the biggest supply of pure diamonds found so far is… Argyle mine Within the Kimberley area of Western Australia, it is among the few financial deposits discovered throughout the Paleozoic orogen adjoining to cratonal areas beneath the Archean basement.

“Moreover, argyle is hosted in olivine Lambroit“As a substitute of kimberlite, greater than 90% of all pink diamonds found have been produced,” they added.

“The invention of Argyle in 1979 led to a paradigm shift that led to diamond exploration in non-relict lands.”

“Regardless of its significance, the geodynamic drivers accountable for the elaboration of such an uncommon diamond-containing complicated stay unclear.”

Utilizing laser beams smaller than the width of a human hair on Argyle rocks, Dr. Ollerok and co-authors discovered that Argyle is 1.3 billion years previous, 100 million years older than beforehand thought.

“Argyle is positioned on the level the place the Kimberley area and the remainder of northern Australia collided collectively a few years in the past, and the sort of collision creates a broken space or ‘scar’ within the land that can by no means absolutely heal,” Dr Ollerock mentioned. .

“Though the continent that later grew to become Australia didn’t break up, the realm the place Argyll lies expanded, together with alongside the scar, creating gaps within the Earth’s crust for magma to flee to the floor, bringing with it the pink diamonds.” “.

“So long as these three parts are in place – deep carbonation, continental collision after which enlargement – we consider will probably be attainable to seek out the ‘subsequent Argyle’, which was as soon as the world’s largest supply of pure diamonds.”

“Even with the data of those three elements, discovering one other pink diamond treasure won’t be with out its challenges,” he mentioned.

“Most diamond deposits are discovered in the course of historical continents as a result of their host volcanoes are likely to rise to the floor for explorers to seek out.”

“Argyle lies on the junction of two of those historical continents, and these edges are sometimes lined in sand and soil, leaving the likelihood that comparable pink diamond-bearing volcanoes stay undiscovered, together with in Australia.”

Murray Rayner, a geologist at world mining group Rio Tinto, mentioned: “The Argyle volcano has produced greater than 90% of the world’s pink diamonds, making it an unequalled supply of those uncommon and sought-after gems.”

“Understanding the age of Argyle Volcano, which is 1.3 billion years previous and is positioned the place a few of Earth’s first continents cut up, we now have necessary extra insights into the formation of those diamonds.”

the the findings It was revealed within the journal Nature Communications.


HKH Ollerok et al. 2023. Placement of the Argyle diamond deposit in an historical rift zone ensuing from the break-up of the supercontinent. Nat Frequent 14, 5274; Two: 10.1038/s41467-023-40904-8



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