Kimberlitic sources of super-deep diamonds in the Juina area, Mato Grosso State, Brazil

Felix V. Kaminsky*, Sergei M. Sablukov, Elena A. Belousova, Paulo Andreazza, Mousseau Tremblay, William L. Griffin

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    26 Citations (Scopus)


    The Juina diamond field, in the 1970-80s, was producing up to 5-6 million carats per year from rich placer deposits, but no economic primary deposits had been found in the area. In 2006-2007, Diagem Inc. discovered a group of diamondiferous kimberlitic pipes within the Chapadão Plateau (Chapadão, or Pandrea cluster), at the head of a drainage system which has produced most of the alluvial diamonds mined in the Juina area. Diamonds from placer deposits and newly discovered kimberlites are identical; they have super-deep origins from the upper-mantle and transition zone. Field observations and petrographic studies have identified crater-facies kimberlitic material at seven separate localities. Kimberlitic material is represented by tuffs, tuffisites and various epiclastic sediments containing chrome spinel, picroilmenite, manganoan ilmenite, zircon and diamond. The diamond grade varies from 0.2-1.8 ct/m 3. Chrome spinel has 30-61 wt.% Cr 2O 3. Picroilmenite contains 6-14 wt.% MgO and 0.2-4 wt.% Cr 2O 3. Manganoan ilmenite has less than 3 wt.% MgO and 0.38-1.41 wt.% MnO. The 176Hf/ 177Hf ratio in kimberlitic zircons is 0.028288-0.28295 with ε Hf = 5.9-8.3, and lies on the average kimberlite trend between depleted mantle and CHUR. The previously known barren and weakly diamondiferous kimberlites in the Juina area have ages of 79-80 Ma. In contrast, zircons from the newly discovered Chapadão kimberlites have a mean 206Pb/ 238U age of 93.6 ± 0.4 Ma, corresponding to a time of magmatic activity related to the opening of the southern part of the Atlantic Ocean. The most likely mechanism of the origin of kimberlitic magma is super-deep subduction process that initiated partial melting of zones in lower mantle with subsequent ascent of proto-kimberlitic magma.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)16-29
    Number of pages14
    Issue number1-2
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2010


    • Brazil
    • Diamond
    • Juina
    • Kimberlite


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