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MEI Online: Commodities: Non-Metallic Ores: Diamond: Latest News: August 12th 2005


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:: Striker Recovers Merlin Diamonds

Striker Resources NL has recovered the first diamonds from reprocessing of the Merlin sorthouse tailings in the Northern Territory of Australia.

The diamonds were recovered from visual observation of coarse concentrates produced from Striker's recently commissioned Merlin diamond processing plant.

The largest diamonds recovered are: 1.39ct yellow gem, fragment from larger stone; 1.11ct white irregular; 0.33ct grey cube; and 0.25ct white octahedron.

Tom Reddicliffe, Striker's Chief Executive Officer, said: "The early recovery of diamonds in this size range is in line with expectations, and the recovery of a gem quality yellow non-fluorescing diamond is further evidence of the presence of a yellow diamond population at Merlin.There has been no previous significant production of these yellow diamonds from Merlin. Yellow gem quality diamonds can often command higher prices.

As previously announced to the market, the Stage 1 development of Merlin involves the reprocessing of up to 10,000 tonnes of sorthouse tailings over 4 months, estimated to contain in excess of 50,000 carats of diamonds. This processing commenced during July 2005.

Stage 2 involves the processing of remaining ore from tailings stockpiles, remnant ore sourced from previously mined pits and ore mineable as a consequence of re-optimised pit designs.

The Merlin Diamond Mining Lease, located in the east of the Northern Territory, encompasses 11 kimberlite pipes (of which 9 were subject to open-pit operations) producing approximately 500,000 carats of diamonds with an average value of $141 per carat. Two pipes with potential economic ore grades remain to be evaluated.




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