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Cullinan mine (Premier Mine), Cullinan, Pretoria District (Tshwane District), Gauteng, South Africai
Regional Level Types
Cullinan mine (Premier Mine)Mine
Cullinan- not defined -
Pretoria District (Tshwane District)District
GautengProvince
South AfricaCountry

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84):
25° 40' 2'' South , 28° 30' 34'' East
Latitude & Longitude (decimal):
Owned/operated by:
Locality type:
Nearest Settlements:
PlacePopulationDistance
Cullinan25,490 (2012)1.5km
Ekangala37,650 (2018)24.2km
Bronkhorstspruit27,343 (2012)28.2km
Pretoria1,619,438 (2016)33.3km
Centurion233,386 (2012)38.8km


A diamond mine on farm Elandsfontein 480 JR, in a kimberlite pipe dated 1,200 million years old, previously owned by De Beers, with a cross section of 32 ha at surface, the pipe is the largest ever found in South Africa.

It was discovered in 1902 as a consequence of prospecting for heavy minerals in nearby rivers, where diamonds were found and traced back to their source in the hills at Cullinan, 20-25 miles east of Pretoria. The mine started producing in 1903 and was operated as an open-pit mine until 1932, when it had to close due to the economic depression.

Ore extraction has been by underground mining methods since 1946. Ore extraction has varied between 2 and 5 Mt per annum and ore treatment between 2 and 7 Mt per annum.

In 2005, it produced 1.3 million cts from 4.6 million tons of ore. The workings are 2,900 feet by 1,400 feet across and more than 700 feet deep.

The mine was renamed ‘Cullinan’ as part of its centenary celebrations and to link the mine to the illustrious heritage of the Cullinan diamond, which provided the two main polished diamonds within the British Crown Jewels (the 530 carat Great Star of Africa and the 317 carat Lesser Star of Africa).

Petra Diamonds initially acquired a 37% interest in the Cullinan mine from De Beers in 2008, but increased its direct interest in the mine to 74% in late 2009 when it acquired Al Rajhi’s holding in the mine. Petra Diamonds continues to mine the underground resource using block cave mining methods.

The mine is famous for its large, high-quality gem diamonds including Type II stones. The world's largest diamond, the 3106 ct Cullinan was discovered in 1905.

The mine has produced over 800 stones weighing more than 100 carats, 140 stones more than 200 carats and around 25% of all diamonds weighing more than 400 carats.

Cullinan is also renowned as the world’s most important source of blue diamonds, providing the collection of 11 rare blues displayed in 2000 at London’s Millennium Dome alongside the Millennium Star and which included the fancy vivid blue ‘Heart of Eternity’ (27 carats polished).

Recent notable stones were the 599 ct "Centenary" and the 1083 ct "Unknown Brown". The diamond grade increases with depth, possibly as a result of diminishing proportions of country-rock inclusions. Among researchers, the mine is best known for its mantle-derived rocks and minerals, of which the garnet harzburgites and lherzolites have received most attention.

Regions containing this locality

Somali Plate (Somalia Plate)Tectonic Plate
Transvaal, South AfricaProvince (Former)

Select Mineral List Type

Standard Detailed Strunz Dana Chemical Elements

Commodity List

This is a list of exploitable or exploited mineral commodities recorded at this locality.


Mineral List


13 valid minerals.

Rock Types Recorded

Note: this is a very new system on mindat.org and data is currently VERY limited. Please bear with us while we work towards adding this information!

Select Rock List Type

Alphabetical List Tree Diagram

Detailed Mineral List:

Actinolite
Formula: ☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2
Colour: green
Description: Found as radiating crystal to 10cm in calcite.
Reference: Cairncross, B. and Dixon, R., (1995) Minerals of South Africa. The Geological Society of South Africa, Linden 2104, South Africa
Calcite
Formula: CaCO3
Reference: Cairncross, B. and Dixon, R., (1995) Minerals of South Africa. The Geological Society of South Africa, Linden 2104, South Africa
Diamond
Formula: C
Reference: Dana 7:I:150; Mining Ann. Review (1985):147; Rocks & Min.: 21:199; 23:608; Bureau of Mines Mineral Trade Notes (Jan 1948)..; Cairncross, B. and Dixon, R., (1995) Minerals of South Africa. The Geological Society of South Africa, Linden 2104, South Africa; Viljoen, K. S., Harris, J. W., Ivanic, T., Richardson, S. H., & Gray, K. (2014). Trace element chemistry of peridotitic garnets in diamonds from the Premier (Cullinan) and Finsch kimberlites, South Africa: Contrasting styles of mantle metasomatism. Lithos, 208, 1-15.; Fabrizio Nestola, Nester Korolev, Maya Kopylova, Nicola Rotiroti, Graham Pearson, Martha Pamato, Matteo Alvaro, Luca Peruzzo (2018) First natural CaSiO3 perovskite inclusion within a diamond from Cullinan kimberlite. in abstracts of the 22nd IMA Meeting Melbourne p 379
Diopside
Formula: CaMgSi2O6
Reference: - Field, M., Stiefenhofer, J., Robey, J., and Kurszlaukis, S. (2008): Ore Geology Reviews 34, 33-75.; Viljoen, K. S., Harris, J. W., Ivanic, T., Richardson, S. H., & Gray, K. (2014). Trace element chemistry of peridotitic garnets in diamonds from the Premier (Cullinan) and Finsch kimberlites, South Africa: Contrasting styles of mantle metasomatism. Lithos, 208, 1-15.
Enstatite
Formula: MgSiO3
Reference: Viljoen, K. S., Harris, J. W., Ivanic, T., Richardson, S. H., & Gray, K. (2014). Trace element chemistry of peridotitic garnets in diamonds from the Premier (Cullinan) and Finsch kimberlites, South Africa: Contrasting styles of mantle metasomatism. Lithos, 208, 1-15.
Fluorapophyllite-(K)
Formula: KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
Reference: Cairncross, B. and Dixon, R., (1995) Minerals of South Africa. The Geological Society of South Africa, Linden 2104, South Africa
Forsterite
Formula: Mg2SiO4
Reference: D. Canil et al. , Earth and Planetary Science Letters 123 (1994) 205-220; Viljoen, K. S., Harris, J. W., Ivanic, T., Richardson, S. H., & Gray, K. (2014). Trace element chemistry of peridotitic garnets in diamonds from the Premier (Cullinan) and Finsch kimberlites, South Africa: Contrasting styles of mantle metasomatism. Lithos, 208, 1-15.
'Garnet Group'
Formula: X3Z2(SiO4)3
Reference: D. Canil et al. , Earth and Planetary Science Letters 123 (1994) 205-220; Viljoen, K. S., Harris, J. W., Ivanic, T., Richardson, S. H., & Gray, K. (2014). Trace element chemistry of peridotitic garnets in diamonds from the Premier (Cullinan) and Finsch kimberlites, South Africa: Contrasting styles of mantle metasomatism. Lithos, 208, 1-15.
Graphite
Formula: C
Reference: D. Canil et al. , Earth and Planetary Science Letters 123 (1994) 205-220
Ilmenite
Formula: Fe2+TiO3
Reference: Dana 7:I:150; Mining Ann. Review(1985):147.
Perovskite
Formula: CaTiO3
Reference: Fabrizio Nestola, Nester Korolev, Maya Kopylova, Nicola Rotiroti, Graham Pearson, Martha Pamato, Matteo Alvaro, Luca Peruzzo (2018) First natural CaSiO3 perovskite inclusion within a diamond from Cullinan kimberlite. in abstracts of the 22nd IMA Meeting Melbourne p 379
Prehnite
Formula: Ca2Al2Si3O10(OH)2
Reference: Cairncross, B. and Dixon, R., (1995) Minerals of South Africa. The Geological Society of South Africa, Linden 2104, South Africa
Pyrite
Formula: FeS2
Reference: Cairncross, B. and Dixon, R., (1995) Minerals of South Africa. The Geological Society of South Africa, Linden 2104, South Africa
Spinel
Formula: MgAl2O4
Description: Chromian variety.
Reference: D. Canil et al. , Earth and Planetary Science Letters 123 (1994) 205-220

List of minerals arranged by Strunz 10th Edition classification

Group 1 - Elements
Diamond1.CB.10aC
Graphite1.CB.05aC
Group 2 - Sulphides and Sulfosalts
Pyrite2.EB.05aFeS2
Group 4 - Oxides and Hydroxides
Ilmenite4.CB.05Fe2+TiO3
Perovskite4.CC.30CaTiO3
Spinel4.BB.05MgAl2O4
Group 5 - Nitrates and Carbonates
Calcite5.AB.05CaCO3
Group 9 - Silicates
Actinolite9.DE.10☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2
Diopside9.DA.15CaMgSi2O6
Enstatite9.DA.05MgSiO3
Fluorapophyllite-(K)9.EA.15KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
Forsterite9.AC.05Mg2SiO4
Prehnite9.DP.20Ca2Al2Si3O10(OH)2
Unclassified Minerals, Rocks, etc.
'Garnet Group'-X3Z2(SiO4)3

List of minerals arranged by Dana 8th Edition classification

Group 1 - NATIVE ELEMENTS AND ALLOYS
Semi-metals and non-metals
Diamond1.3.6.1C
Graphite1.3.6.2C
Group 2 - SULFIDES
AmBnXp, with (m+n):p = 1:2
Pyrite2.12.1.1FeS2
Group 4 - SIMPLE OXIDES
A2X3
Ilmenite4.3.5.1Fe2+TiO3
Perovskite4.3.3.1CaTiO3
Group 7 - MULTIPLE OXIDES
AB2X4
Spinel7.2.1.1MgAl2O4
Group 14 - ANHYDROUS NORMAL CARBONATES
A(XO3)
Calcite14.1.1.1CaCO3
Group 51 - NESOSILICATES Insular SiO4 Groups Only
Insular SiO4 Groups Only with all cations in octahedral [6] coordination
Forsterite51.3.1.2Mg2SiO4
Group 65 - INOSILICATES Single-Width,Unbranched Chains,(W=1)
Single-Width Unbranched Chains, W=1 with chains P=2
Diopside65.1.3a.1CaMgSi2O6
Enstatite65.1.2.1MgSiO3
Group 72 - PHYLLOSILICATES Two-Dimensional Infinite Sheets with Other Than Six-Membered Rings
Two-Dimensional Infinite Sheets with Other Than Six-Membered Rings with 4-membered rings
Prehnite72.1.3.1Ca2Al2Si3O10(OH)2
Two-Dimensional Infinite Sheets with Other Than Six-Membered Rings with 3-, 4-, or 5-membered rings and 8-membered rings
Fluorapophyllite-(K)72.3.1.1KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
Unclassified Minerals, Mixtures, etc.
Actinolite-☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2
'Garnet Group'-X3Z2(SiO4)3

List of minerals for each chemical element

HHydrogen
H PrehniteCa2Al2Si3O10(OH)2
H Actinolite☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2
H Fluorapophyllite-(K)KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
CCarbon
C DiamondC
C CalciteCaCO3
C GraphiteC
OOxygen
O IlmeniteFe2+TiO3
O SpinelMgAl2O4
O PrehniteCa2Al2Si3O10(OH)2
O Actinolite☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2
O CalciteCaCO3
O Fluorapophyllite-(K)KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
O DiopsideCaMgSi2O6
O Garnet GroupX3Z2(SiO4)3
O ForsteriteMg2SiO4
O EnstatiteMgSiO3
O PerovskiteCaTiO3
FFluorine
F Fluorapophyllite-(K)KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
MgMagnesium
Mg SpinelMgAl2O4
Mg Actinolite☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2
Mg DiopsideCaMgSi2O6
Mg ForsteriteMg2SiO4
Mg EnstatiteMgSiO3
AlAluminium
Al SpinelMgAl2O4
Al PrehniteCa2Al2Si3O10(OH)2
SiSilicon
Si PrehniteCa2Al2Si3O10(OH)2
Si Actinolite☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2
Si Fluorapophyllite-(K)KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
Si DiopsideCaMgSi2O6
Si Garnet GroupX3Z2(SiO4)3
Si ForsteriteMg2SiO4
Si EnstatiteMgSiO3
SSulfur
S PyriteFeS2
KPotassium
K Fluorapophyllite-(K)KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
CaCalcium
Ca PrehniteCa2Al2Si3O10(OH)2
Ca Actinolite☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2
Ca CalciteCaCO3
Ca Fluorapophyllite-(K)KCa4(Si8O20)(F,OH) · 8H2O
Ca DiopsideCaMgSi2O6
Ca PerovskiteCaTiO3
TiTitanium
Ti IlmeniteFe2+TiO3
Ti PerovskiteCaTiO3
FeIron
Fe IlmeniteFe2+TiO3
Fe PyriteFeS2
Fe Actinolite☐{Ca2}{Mg4.5-2.5Fe0.5-2.5}(Si8O22)(OH)2

Regional Geology

This geological map and associated information on rock units at or nearby to the coordinates given for this locality is based on relatively small scale geological maps provided by various national Geological Surveys. This does not necessarily represent the complete geology at this locality but it gives a background for the region in which it is found.

Click on geological units on the map for more information. Click here to view full-screen map on Macrostrat.org

Statherian - Paleoproterozoic
1600 - 2500 Ma



ID: 3184921
Paleoproterozoic sedimentary rocks

Age: Proterozoic (1600 - 2500 Ma)

Lithology: Sedimentary rocks

Reference: Chorlton, L.B. Generalized geology of the world: bedrock domains and major faults in GIS format: a small-scale world geology map with an extended geological attribute database. doi: 10.4095/223767. Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 5529. [154]

Rhyacian
2050 - 2300 Ma



ID: 3308846

Age: Rhyacian (2050 - 2300 Ma)

Lithology: Sedimentary and volcaniclastic

Reference: Thiéblemont, D. (ed.). New edition of the 1:10,000,000 geological map of Africa. CGMW-BRGM. [190]

Rhyacian - Siderian
2050 - 2500 Ma



ID: 2226930
Rayton Formation of Pretoria Group of Transvaal Supergroup

Age: Proterozoic (2050 - 2500 Ma)

Stratigraphic Name: Rayton Formation

Description: Quartzite, shale, subordinate subgreywacke

Reference: Council for Geoscience. Geologic map of South Africa, 1:1M. National Science Councils of South Africa. [41]

Data and map coding provided by Macrostrat.org, used under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License

References

Sort by

Year (asc) Year (desc) Author (A-Z) Author (Z-A)
Mathias, M., Siebert, J.C., Rickwood, P.C. (1970) Some Aspects of the Mineralogy and Petrology of Ultramafic Xenoliths in Kimberlite. Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology: 26: 75-123.
Mining Annual Review (1985): 147.
Canil, D., et al. (1994) Earth and Planetary Science Letters: 123: 205-220.
Cairncross, B., Dixon, R (1995) Minerals of South Africa. The Geological Society of South Africa, Linden 2104, South Africa.
Field, M., Stiefenhofer, J., Robey, J., Kurszlaukis, S. (2008) Kimberlite-hosted diamond deposits of southern Africa: A review. Ore Geology Reviews: 34: 33-75.
Viljoen, K.S., Harris, J.W., Ivanic, T., Richardson, S.H., Gray, K. (2014) Trace element chemistry of peridotitic garnets in diamonds from the Premier (Cullinan) and Finsch kimberlites, South Africa: Contrasting styles of mantle metasomatism. Lithos: 208: 1-15.
Bureau of Mines Mineral Trade Notes (Jan 1948).
Dana 7:I:150.
Rocks & Minerals: 21:199; 23:608.


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