AIM-listed diamond producer BlueRock Diamonds has commence kimberlite processing from its second kimberlite pipe – the high-grade KV1.

“I’m delighted that processing from KV1 is now underway which is anticipated to increase the overall grade, allowing for greater flexibility in production and more consistent results,” says BlueRock Diamonds CEO Adam Waugh.

BlueRock Diamonds which owns and operates the Kareevlei diamond mine in the Kimberley region of South Africa. KV1 is one of five known kimberlite pipes within the BlueRock Diamonds’ Kareevlei project area and has an inferred mineral resource grade of 6.3 cpht, which is 40% greater than that of the 4.5 cpht KV2 pipe where processing commenced in 2014.

The company’s Competent Persons Report contained in its AIM admission document estimated the Kareevlei inferred mineral resource (KV1, KV2 and KV3 kimberlite pipes) under the SAMREC code to contain 359 000 carats in 7 984 000 t of ore.

Since mining operations commenced at Kareevlei 10 010 carats have been mined from 370 233 t of ore from the KV2 pipe.

KV1 is situated approximately 40 m from KV2, therefore, over time the two pipes will be mined in a single open pit, allowing the company to benefit from a lower stripping ratio.  Alongside this, 10 m of the non-diamond bearing calcrete cap will be mined off to waste, which allows for the higher inferred mineral resource grade of KV1 to be reached sooner than in KV2 where only 7 m of the calcrete cap was mined off to waste.

BlueRock Diamonds’ announced earlier this month that the crushing circuit at Kareevlei is now processing at or around the company’s target production level of 80 tph following the installation of a second cone crusher and the implementation of optimisation initiatives.

This is expected to allow the company to alleviate the production challenges often faced in the rainy period from January to April through establishing a stockpile of crushed material for processing.

“With our crushing circuit now processing at or around the target production levels of 80 tph, the outlook for the remainder of 2018 is looking positive. I look forward to providing a further update in our Q3 production report due in early October 2018,” says Waugh.