Lunch & Learn with Vincent Pardieu – field gemmologist

Journeying to Greenland for Rubies from Aappaluttoq

DANAT held its first lunchtime learning and discussion session on 14 September 2017.

Field Gemmologist Vincent Pardieu, who is responsible for collecting gem materials directly from mine sites for our Research Collection, delivered an extensive and exciting presentation on his recent expedition to the Aappaluttoq ruby mine in Greenland. Vincent’s work is a stimulating area of gemmology and the attendees were captivated by his expedition stories, pictures, recording and samples brought back to Bahrain for DANAT’s researchers to study.

During the training session Vincent described the ruby mining site at Aappaluttoq, which means ‘red’ in Greenlandic. Despite the mine only being open for approximately one year, the rubies extracted are in fact the oldest in the world and have a deep red colour along with a high degree of transparency. It was captivating to watch as Vincent manually chipped at the rocks to collect ruby samples knowing that we would shortly have the pleasure of analysing and adding the samples to our reference collection. He provided an in-depth analysis of the scientific characteristics of rubies from Greenland, comparing and contrasting them with rubies from other locations across the world.

Our collaboration with Vincent is very special and the training session was held to educate everyone at DANAT what being a Field Gemmologist entails. For origin reliability, our reference collection is critical to our research and we believe that the best way to negate any concern in this regard is by collecting samples directly from the mines. Vincent assists us in this process by witnessing and carrying out gemstone extractions himself during his expeditions. Now that the ruby samples have arrived in Bahrain, they will be studied in DANAT. A publication will follow (watch this space).

About Vincent Pardieu

Vincent Pardieu is a consultant field gemmologist from ‘VP Consulting SPC’, which was established in January 2017 and has since worked closely with DANAT. Before accepting this role, Vincent work with the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) for 8 years during which time, he built and managed the first field gemmology department of any modern gem laboratory. Prior to this, Vincent was the Laboratory Director at the Asian Institute of Gemological Sciences (AIGS) and Staff and Research Gemmologist at the Gübelin Gem Laboratory in Switzerland.

Vincent is internationally renowned for his dedication to all things related to gemmology and conservation. He has led over 110 field expeditions to coloured stone mining areas around the world and published many articles regarding gemmology, conservation and his expeditions. Vincent has two personal websites and that are amongst the most visited in the gemmological world.