Welcome to Mirny
Diamond-Mining Centre of the Sakha Republic (Yakutia)

Mirny Diamond Sorting Centre:
The Source and the Temple of Diamonds

[ Photo ]

The Diamond Sorting Centre (DSC) was created in Mirny, Sakha Republic (Yakutia), on November 27, 1990, by the order of Vladimir Piskunov, the director of Yakutalmaz Association. Nikolai Zudin was the organizer and the inspirer of the workshop and, from 1993, the first director of the Diamond Sorting Centre, a good specialist in mineralogy, a skillful cutter and a very energetic, creative person.

Today, the DSC represents a complicated balanced mechanism, comprising various dedicated works and services. They are:

In order to improve the service of these sections, computational and informational departments have been created.

Diamonds from ALROSA Co., Ltd., are transported to the DSC for initial sorting and evaluation.

Employees of the registration and depository section assess the diamond production weight and divide the diamonds between ALROSA (75 shares) and Comdragmet of Yakutia (25 shares).

The scheme of movement and the system of diamond production inventory are completely computerized. An exclusive software package was created by the leading specialist of the computational and informational section of the DSC, Oleg Popov.

From the moment the diamonds come to the DSC and till the moment they are sent to the United Saling Organization and to the Yakutian Enterprise for Diamond Trading, the diamonds have to undergo the standard cycle of processing: division into classes and evaluation.

The whole mass of diamonds passes through a number of mechanical screens where the stones are separated according to the size or diameter of crystals. Diamonds with a crystal diameter larger than 3.5 mm are separated into classes of size according to the weight of the stone. Each diamond is weighed either mechanically on special instruments or by hand. Thus all of the production is classified according to international standards into 16 dimension-weight groups.

Single-crystal weighing is done on electronic weights made by the Swiss company "Metler". The level of accuracy ensures high labour productivity, and it reduces inaccuracy when operations are repeated many times. Diamonds are usually described with an application of four parameters: mass, shape, colour, and defects (presence of admixtures, inclusions, fractures, sheaves, etc.). As a result of this diamond classification, 7.5 thousand categories of various diamonds arise, evaluation of the cost of which is performed according to the current price list.

It takes one-two years to master the art of diamond sorting. The work at this site requires great tension and concentration. After the sorting, the diamonds are sent back to the depository, and the price of this diamond portion becomes the price of the whole volume of production of a definite mining complex whose production is in the depository of DSC at that moment. The diamond raw material acquires its price and becomes a commodity.

The convergence is very high between the evaluation of diamonds by specialists of the DSC, on the one hand, and by other divisions of United Saling Organization of ALROSA, on the other hand. Leading experts of the DSC are highly qualified specialists who have gone through additional training at the Moscow State Geological Exploration Academy, in the department of gemology, have had practical training in the Russian State Store-House, and have improved their qualifications in Belgium, Sweden, USA.

The predominant equipment here is of Russian make. The DSC fulfills a definite historical mission in Mirny as well. It keeps a complete collection of "historical" diamonds connected with the history of geologic-explorational works, the purpose of which was to discover diamondiferous kimberlite pipes in Yakutia.

The people working in the centre are unusual, though. They are a little more consistent than others, attentive to minor things and details; they understand the weight of responsibility. The diamond, from which every day starts, influences the psychology of these people. They are involved daily in the eternal value of a diamond and its constant beauty.

Copyright ©Mirny Lyceum-School 2002. All rights reserved.
Project by 11th Year Students of the Lyceum-School in Mirny
Project Supervisor: Maikova T. N.