Kimberlite collection

Tucked away in the nether regions of the Leslie Social Science Building is a storage area used by the Department of Geological Sciences. At first glance, it seems to be a veritable Aladdin's cave of geological wonders. In fact, the Mantle Room, as it is fondly called by its keepers, houses a unique collection of kimberlite and associated rocks from continental roots. Kimberlite is a type of igneous volcanic rock of ultra-deep origin. The specific economic value of kimberlite lies in the particular precious gem that it is known to contain. As suggested by the eponymous origin of the rock name, this is the diamond. Kimberley, home of The Big Hole, is a primary mining site and locus of the late nineteenth century South African diamond rush.

Amongst others, the Department of Geological Sciences, in particular the Kimberlite Research Unit, uses the valuable collection for research.

 

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