Significant progress has been made in advancing Stellar Diamonds’ 1.1 million carat Tongo dyke kimberlite diamond project in Sierra Leone up the development curve towards production.

A definitive feasibility study (DFS) of the resource is underway and aimed at ascertaining the economic parameters of the Tongo project, Stellar Diamonds said in a statement. The grade and average modelled diamond value of Dyke-1 has been established at 120cpht and $248 per carat from a 1,050 carat parcel, with the current bulk sampling work geared to providing a larger diamond parcel for more robust diamond valuation work.

“We continue to make excellent progress in proving the inherent value of the high grade and high value 1.1 million carat resource of Dyke-1 at Tongo. Good progress has been made on the bulk sampling and I look forward to reporting processing results in early February,” said Stellar Diamonds Chief Executive Karl Smithson.

“Our focus for 2014 is the completion of a DFS on which a production decision will be made. The project has already yielded attractive diamond grades and values and we remain confident that we have an exciting opportunity to crystallise value for shareholders by advancing Tongo, which is located in a highly prospective diamondiferous region, into production.”