Russia's asteroid crater diamond mine.

"Russia has just declassified news that will shake world gem markets to their core: the discovery of a vast new diamond field containing "trillions of carats," enough to supply global markets for another 3,000 years.

The Soviets discovered the bonanza back in the 1970s beneath a 35-million-year-old, 62-mile diameter asteroid crater in eastern Siberia known as Popigai Astroblem.

They decided to keep it secret, and not to exploit it, apparently because the USSR's huge diamond operations at Mirny, in Yakutia, were already producing immense profits in what was then a tightly controlled world market."

(Full article at CS Monitor.)

And here's what Wikipedia has to say about this particular asteroid crater and how all the diamonds came to be:

"The Popigai crater in Siberia, Russia is tied with Manicouagan Crater as the fourth largest verified impact crater on Earth. A large bolide impact created the 100 kilometres (62 mi) diameter crater 35.7 ± 0.2 (2σ) million years ago during the late Eocene (Priabonian stage). The crater is 1½ hours (by helicopter) from the outpost of Khatanga. It is designated by UNESCO as a Geopark, a site of special geological heritage.

For decades the Popigai crater has fascinated paleontologists and geologists, but the entire area was completely off limits because of the diamonds and the mines constructed by gulag prisoners under Stalin; however, a major investigatory expedition was undertaken in 1997 (IPEX 1997) which greatly advanced understanding of the enigmatic structure. The impactor in this event has been identified as either an 8 km (5.0 mi) diameter chondrite asteroid, or a 5 km (3.1 mi) diameter stony asteroid.

The shock pressures from the impact instantaneously transformed graphite in the ground into diamonds within a 13.6 km (8.5 mi) radius of the impact point. Diamonds are usually 0.5 to 2 mm (0.020 to 0.079 in) in diameter; a few exceptional specimens are 10 mm (0.39 in) in size. The diamonds not only inherit the tabular shape of the original graphite grains but they additionally preserve the original crystal's delicate striations."

(Full article at Wikipedia.)

Because what the world really needs to solve all of its problems is more diamonds. Trillions of carat diamonds. Sigh.

Russia's asteroid crater diamond mine.