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Siberia’s enormous Mir mine, which once produced over 10 million carats of diamonds, has been filmed by drone. Despite rumors that the hole can swallow up helicopters, the UAV made it out alive with some breathtaking footage.
The aerial recording managed to capture the entire 1.2-kilometer diameter of one of the largest man-made pits on Earth, which has a depth of 525 meters.
Development of the Mir (‘peace’ in Russian) mine began in 1957 in Russia’s Siberian republic of Yakutia and it once produced around 10 million carats of diamonds annually. One of the most striking gems unearthed there was a 342.57-carat lemon yellow diamond, rather unromantically named ‘The 26th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union’.
Although open pit mining ceased in 2001, mining work continued at the site by underground methods until August 2017, when the hole flooded. Russian diamond miner Alrosa is now considering re-starting operations.