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Sapphire discovery prompts scientific breakthrough


July, 2017
L. Irwin
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Canada’s only known sapphires – Beluga Sapphires –  were found near the hamlet of Kimmirut on Baffin Island.

Recently, the 48 high-quality stones gained notoriety when presented in a brooch to Queen Elizabeth II as part of Canada’s anniversary Jubilee.  

Impressively, researchers from the University of British Columbia’s Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences have discovered the “recipe” that leads to the formation of these rare and beautiful stones. By determining the specific sequence of pressure and temperature events from Earth’s history, and comparing those to information and regional data, researchers have created a guide that points to the most promising areas for sapphire exploration.  Those areas are predicted to be near a fault that separates the Lake Harbour Group and Narsajuaq terranes.

Experts expect that the new findings will not only be valuable to this specific area but can also be applied to mining exploration elsewhere.

  1. Header Photo attribution: Ansgar Walk via Wikipedia Commons (Under Creative commons share-alike)
  2. http://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/hillberg–berk-creates-canadian-sapphire-jubilee-brooch-for-her-majesty-queen-elizabeth-ii-635439573.html


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