Ikuma diamonds were formed within kimberlite billions of years ago deep underground below Canada’s vast arctic north. In 1991, after 15 years of searching, a prospector and a geologist discovered a kimberlite and diamond rich spot within the Northwest Territories of Canada, now known to be the Diavik Mine located in Lac de Gras. After another 11 years of planning, collaboration with local communities, environmental impact studies and $1.3 billion in investments, the mine was opened and production of the Ikuma Canadian Diamond began.
The discovery of diamonds in the Northwest Territories of Canada brought new opportunities to Diavik's neighbors, most of whom are indigenous Aboriginal communities. By introducing the Diavik mine, they were committed to benefit the local community by providing training and employment; as well as purchasing more than 70 percent of goods and services locally to supply operations at the mine.
01 - Diavik Mine
The Diavik Diamond Mine is located on a 12 square mile island, informally called East Island, in Lac de Gras. It is approximately 186 miles by air northeast of Yellowknife, the capital of Canada’s Northwest Territories. The northern most mine, the Arctic Circle lies only 137 miles north.
02 - Snap Lake Mine
The Snap Lake Mine, De Beers' first mine outside of Africa, is unique in Canada. Built on the shore of Snap Lake, 137 miles northeast of Yellowknife, the mine is Canada's first completely underground diamond mine. Before building the mine, an ice road had to be built that would make the mine accessible by land for 6-8 weeks during the winter. An airstrip provides access the rest of the year.
03 - Yellowknife
04 - Victor Mine
The Victor Mine is located in the James Bay Lowlands of Northern Ontario, approximately 56 miles west of the coastal community of Attawapiskat First Nation. It is Ontario's first diamond mine and the second in Canada for De Beers. The Victor Mine adheres to the highest environmental standards. It is a model for the best-practices and had been voted mine of the year for its achievement.
Located on the Lac de Gras, the Diavik mine was designed with the environment in mind from its inception; committed to preserve and protect the land, water, and animals. During the construction of the mine, 5,000 fish were relocated and a dike was built; once the mine is eventually closed, the dike and mine will be flooded and parts will become ideal aquatic habitats for the re-introduced fish.
The region's caribou pass through from the tundra and the Northern Forests during their spring and fall migrations; to allow easy passing Diavik contours their waste rock that is produced by the mine. A wind farm was also constructed to help reduce the carbon footprint of the mine's operations.
There is an ever-constant focus on protecting the indigenous communities as well as the water, the land and the wildlife that inhabit this unique environment.
While operations are run 24 hours a day, loose granite and darker kimberlite are hauled away from the mine to a processing plant that stands 11 stories tall where gravity, water, and X-ray technology, not chemicals, are used to separate the diamonds from the kimberlite.
From this process the two most common diamond crystals that are found are octahedron and maccle.
IKUMA IDEAL CUT
Ben Bridge Jeweler is proud to offer Ideal Cut Round and Square diamonds that are polished with absolute perfection. Each diamond exhibits the Hearts and Arrows pattern signifying that every facet is in perfect alignment to reflect light and dazzle the eye, created by a master diamantaire.
Based on the mathematical calculations of Marcel Tolkowsky, Ikuma diamonds are cut according to ideal proportions. Developed in 1919, this ideal cut was created to produce maximum brilliance with a high degree of dispersion or fire.
IKUMA PRINCESS CUT
The Ikuma Princess was created to maximize the brilliance, fire and scintillation of the standard princess cut diamond. Designed and crafted in Canada, great care is taken to maximize the return of light back through the top of the diamond.
AMERICAN GEM SOCIETY
The AGS Laboratories uses a cut-grading system, based on optical physics and the American Gem Society's proprietary ray-tracing software. This three-dimensional analysis is the ultimate test for evaluating the performance of light in a diamond, which is the cornerstone of the Diamond Quality® Document (DQD). Every Ikuma Ideal Round and Square is graded at the highest level (AGS 0) of light performance.
Each Ikuma Canadian diamond has a unique number that reveals details about the stone's origin.