Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Rio Tinto's Bunder project

The Bunder project is Rio Tinto's most advanced diamond mining project. Located in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, it is currently at the pre-feasibility stage, awaiting final approval for a mining lease.

It is the first new diamond mine in India in over 40 years.

The Bunder project includes a cluster of eight lamproite pipes hosted by flat-lying Proterozoic sedimentary rocks. Drilling and sampling has so far focussed on the Atri lamproite, two coalesced pipes with a surface area of 16.6 hectares. The pipe is exposed along its south-western margin but elsewhere is covered by up to 23 metres of colluvium.
The Bunder Mine Plan was prepared and submitted to the Indian Bureau of Mines and was approved in July 2013. The Mining Lease is anticipated to be granted in 2015 with production commencing after a two to three year construction period.

The Bunder Deposit is estimated to be seven times richer than the Panna mine (also located in Madhya Pradesh), with a likely production rate at least 30 times greater. Madhya Pradesh would therefore rank, in terms of volume and value, in the top ten diamond producing regions of the world.