The updated resource estimate has increased the inferred resource by 2.9 million carats, from 4.5 million to 7.4 million.
The updated report has increased the inferred resource by 2.9-million carats, from 4.5 million to 7.4 million.
This new upgraded value is the result of an ongoing front end engineering design (FEED) program, as well as inclusion of data from the recent mine development drilling program, which targeted 10,792 meters for infill core drilling.
The Tongo project’s upgrade resource values cover four kimberlite deposits, with Kundu and Lando being the most prolific and valuable.
Kundu is estimated to contain 2.8-million carats of gems, with an average grade of 3.2 carats per tonne (cpt). Newfield pegs the value of the Kundu stones to be US$194 per carat.
Similarly, the Lando kimberlite deposit is projected at 3-million carats at a grade of 2.9 cpt and a diamond value of US$194 per carat.
“The diamond grades and values, in particular for the Kundu and Lando kimberlites, point to some of the most impressive kimberlites globally on a dollar per tonne rock value basis,” Mike Lynn, Newfield’s executive director, said in the announcement.
“Previous deeper drilling has shown that these kimberlites extend to much greater depths which, along with the clear potential from other identified kimberlites on the project, would suggest the global resource could be significantly increased in the future with more evaluation work.”
Lynn noted the company believes the value of Tongo extends beyond this upgraded resource estimate. Aside from the four identified kimberlites, the company plans to explore an additional seven kimberlites at the site.
Newfield acquired Tongo and other assets under the Stellar Diamonds portfolio when the Australian diamond explorer purchased Stellar for US$23.6 million earlier this year.
The company expects the FEED program will be completed by the end of 2018, leaving the project on track for advanced development during 2019.
Shares of Newfield were trading at AU$0.165 on Tuesday (November 27).
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Securities Disclosure: I, Georgia Williams, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.