High-security diamond facility opens in Saskatoon

    SASKATOON, June 25 /CNW/ - The Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC)
invited clients and media to tour its new high-security diamond analysis
facility in Saskatoon today. To meet the growing industry demand for a
full-service lab in Saskatchewan, SRC expanded its existing Geoanalytical
Laboratories diamond operations to a new facility, effectively doubling its
capacity and making it one of the largest labs of its kind in the world.
    "Today's event showcases the latest evolution SRC has made in support of
the mining industry, with the opening of this high-security diamond facility,"
said Premier Lorne Calvert. "The fact that both local and international
companies are seeking services at this facility goes to show that
Saskatchewan's talents are recognized around the globe and we are a hub for
providing some of the very best services in the world."
    Overall mineral exploration in Saskatchewan increased more than 10-fold
in the last five years and an additional 15 per cent increase is expected this
year. SRC continues to help develop Saskatchewan's diamond industry through
their work. This expansion will allow mining companies to access the full
range of geoanalytical services in close proximity to their operations, making
it more convenient and economical to do business in Saskatchewan.
    SRC is not new to the diamond business. The organization initially
expanded its mining support services to include diamond work in the 1980's
after the first Saskatchewan diamond find at Fort à la Corne. "Over the years,
we have built a reputation for independence and outstanding quality in our
geoanalytical work," said SRC President and CEO, Dr. Laurier Schramm. "As the
only full-service diamond lab in the Prairie Provinces, we are able to help
companies pursue exploration in Saskatchewan.
    "SRC's bold vision in making major capacity expansion commitments will
serve the diamond mining industry well into the future," said De Beers
Canada's Manager of Advanced Exploration, Peter Williamson. "This will also
offer the diamond industry some much needed additional capacity and options
for accelerated delivery of trustworthy quantitative results, so crucial to
our prospecting and evaluation efforts."
    A new dense media separation (DMS) plant is also an important part of
operations because it provides additional processing capacity. The first
client scheduled to use the DMS plant is Saskatchewan-based Great Western
Diamonds Corp. (GWDC). "SRC gives a locally-based, cost-effective service
consistently based on a high level of professionalism that has continued to
improve with time," said GWDC President and CEO Brent Jellicoe. "SRC has
proactively worked to provide a superb Saskatchewan solution for the needs of
industry partners."

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at http://photos.newswire.ca.
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited
    members of the media./

For further information:

For further information: Karen Potter, SRC Communications, Saskatoon,
SK, (306) 933-7089, potter@src.sk.ca

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Saskatchewan Research Council

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