Chapter 2: The Discovery of the Argyle Pipe, Western Australia: The World’s First Lamproite-Hosted Diamond Mine
Published:January 01, 2018
Christopher B. Smith, Warren J. Atkinson, Ewen W.J. Tyler, Anne E. Hall, Iain Macdonald, 2018. "The Discovery of the Argyle Pipe, Western Australia: The World’s First Lamproite-Hosted Diamond Mine", Geoscience and Exploration of the Argyle, Bunder, Diavik, and Murowa Diamond Deposits, Andy T. Davy, Chris B. Smith, Herwart Helmstaedt, A. Lynton Jaques, John J. Gurney
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Argyle diamond mine discovery is a tale of scientific exploration, belief, and persistence over a nine-year period from project formulation in 1971 to pipe discovery in 1979. Initial inspiration came from a suggestion that leucite lamproites that crop out in the Kimberley region of Western Australia were derived by differentiation from a kimberlite-like peridotite magma. A 200,000-km2-wide program of reconnaissance stream sampling was initiated in the north of Western Australia and discovered kimberlite indicator minerals and diamonds in three parts of the Kimberley basin and adjacent King Leopold and Halls Creek orogens. An innovative laboratory was constructed...