Rio Tinto Diamond Donation

Credit: Courtesy of Rio Tinto Diamonds
September 9, 2014
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Credit: Courtesy of Rio Tinto Diamonds

The Smithsonian’s National Gem and Mineral Collection recently expanded thanks to a significant donation of Australian diamonds from Rio Tinto, a British-Australian multinational metals and mining corporation. The gift includes 500 carats of rough diamonds from Rio Tinto’s Argyle Diamond Mine in the remote northwest region of Australia. Rough diamonds consist of diamonds in their natural state after they are mined, prior to polishing. Smithsonian researchers at the National Museum of Natural History plan to study the gems, which include rare, pink diamonds, to better understand the geological history of the planet.