The Udachnaya pipe is a diamond deposit in the Daldyn-Alakit kimberlite field in Sakha Republic, Russia. It is an open-pit mine, is located just outside the Arctic circle at 66°26′N 112°19′E. Udachnaya was discovered on 15 June 1955, just two days after the discovery of the diamond pipe Mir by Soviet geologist Vladimir Shchukin and his team, it is more than 600 metres deep. The nearby settlement of Udachny is named for the deposit; as of 2010, Udachnaya pipe is controlled by Russian diamond company Alrosa, which planned to halt open-pit mining in favor of underground mining in 2010. The mine has estimated reserves of 225.8 million carats of diamonds and an annual production capacity of 10.4 million carats. Mir mine Volcanic pipe Satellite photo of the Udachnaya pipe Alexeev, Sergey V. Drozdova. "The First Experience of Saline Drainage Waters Disposal from the Udachnaya Pipe Quarry into Permaforest". Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research, University of Colorado at Boulder
A gemstone is a piece of mineral crystal which, in cut and polished form, is used to make jewelry or other adornments. However, certain rocks and organic materials that are not minerals are used for jewelry and are therefore considered to be gemstones as well. Most gemstones are hard, but some soft minerals are used in jewelry because of their luster or other physical properties that have aesthetic value. Rarity is another characteristic. Apart from jewelry, from earliest antiquity engraved gems and hardstone carvings, such as cups, were major luxury art forms. A gem maker is called a gemcutter; the traditional classification in the West, which goes back to the ancient Greeks, begins with a distinction between precious and semi-precious. In modern use the precious stones are diamond, ruby and emerald, with all other gemstones being semi-precious; this distinction reflects the rarity of the respective stones in ancient times, as well as their quality: all are translucent with fine color in their purest forms, except for the colorless diamond, hard, with hardnesses of 8 to 10 on the Mohs scale.
Other stones are classified by their color and hardness. The traditional distinction does not reflect modern values, for example, while garnets are inexpensive, a green garnet called tsavorite can be far more valuable than a mid-quality emerald. Another unscientific term for semi-precious gemstones used in art history and archaeology is hardstone. Use of the terms'precious' and'semi-precious' in a commercial context is, misleading in that it deceptively implies certain stones are intrinsically more valuable than others, not the case. In modern times gemstones are identified by gemologists, who describe gems and their characteristics using technical terminology specific to the field of gemology; the first characteristic a gemologist uses to identify a gemstone is its chemical composition. For example, diamonds are made of carbon and rubies of aluminium oxide. Next, many gems are crystals which are classified by their crystal system such as cubic or trigonal or monoclinic. Another term used is habit, the form the gem is found in.
For example, which have a cubic crystal system, are found as octahedrons. Gemstones are classified into different groups and varieties. For example, ruby is the red variety of the species corundum, while any other color of corundum is considered sapphire. Other examples are the emerald, red beryl, goshenite and morganite, which are all varieties of the mineral species beryl. Gems are characterized in terms of refractive index, specific gravity, cleavage and luster, they may exhibit double refraction. They may have a distinctive absorption spectrum. Material or flaws within a stone may be present as inclusions. Gemstones may be classified in terms of their "water"; this is a recognized grading of the gem's luster, transparency, or "brilliance". Transparent gems are considered "first water", while "second" or "third water" gems are those of a lesser transparency. There is no universally accepted grading system for gemstones. Diamonds are graded using a system developed by the Gemological Institute of America in the early 1950s.
All gemstones were graded using the naked eye. The GIA system included a major innovation: the introduction of 10x magnification as the standard for grading clarity. Other gemstones are still graded using the naked eye. A mnemonic device, the "four Cs", has been introduced to help the consumer understand the factors used to grade a diamond. With modification, these categories can be useful in understanding the grading of all gemstones; the four criteria carry different weight depending upon whether they are applied to colored gemstones or to colorless diamonds. In diamonds, cut is the primary determinant of value, followed by color. Diamonds are meant to sparkle, to break down light into its constituent rainbow colors, chop it up into bright little pieces, deliver it to the eye. In its rough crystalline form, a diamond will do none of these things. In gemstones that have color, including colored diamonds, it is the purity and beauty of that color, the primary determinant of quality. Physical characteristics that make a colored stone valuable are color, clarity to a lesser extent, unusual optical phenomena within the stone such as color zoning and asteria.
The Greeks, for example valued asteria gemstones, which were regarded as powerful love charms, Helen of Troy was known to have worn star-corundum. Aside from the diamond, the ruby, emerald and opal have been considered to be precious. Up to the discoveries of bulk amethyst in Brazil in the 19th century, amethyst was considered a precious stone as well, going back to ancient Greece. In the last century certain stones such as aquamarine and cat's eye have been popular and hence been regarded as precious. Today such a distinction is no longer made by the gemstone trade. Many gemstones are used in the most expensive jewelr
Government of the Soviet Union
The Government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was the main part of the executive branch of government of the USSR. Its head of government was the officeholder known in the West as the Premier of the Soviet Union. However, the USSR was a one-party state governed by the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, the power of, derived from the Constitution of the Soviet Union; the Politburo of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union was de facto the most important policy-making organ of the country and made government policy, with the Government being subordinate to the Party. The members of the Soviet Government—- people's commissars and directors of state committees—- were recommended by the Premier and appointed by the Praesidium of the Supreme Soviet; the Government of the USSR exercised its executive powers in conformity with the Soviet Constitution and legislation enacted by the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union. During the period between when the USSR was established on December 30, 1922, the first Government of the USSR was formed on July 6, 1923, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic's government acted as an interim government of the USSR.
The generic term Government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics can refer to the following organs of government of the USSR: Council of People's Commissars Council of Ministers Cabinet of Ministers Additionally, during the last period of the Soviet Union, the following interim bodies performed functions of the union government after the Cabinet of Ministers was dissolved by a vote of no confidence: Committee for the Operational Management of the National Economy Inter-republican Economic Committee Interstate Economic Committee However no new full government was formed due to the dissolution of the Soviet Union. The term was used by the government itself, the press and colloquially to mean the executive part alone, as that part of the government was responsible for ordinary governance of the nation; the Government of the USSR, the main executive power of the Soviet state, were both directed by the premier, who had an unspecified number of first deputy chairmen and deputy chairmen of the government, all of which were given responsibility concerning one specific topic.
These were accompanied by a varying number of government ministers and state committee managers, recommended by the premier and appointed by the Praesidium of the Supreme Soviet. The executive branch was responsible for both short- and long-term economic and cultural development; the Government's official residence was at the Kremlin Senate in Moscow. The Government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics exercised its executive powers in conformity with the Soviet Constitution and legislation enacted by the Supreme Soviet, its structure, operational procedures and decision-making processes were defined by the 1977 Soviet constitution. The Constitution mandated that the Government propose legislation and other documents to the Supreme Soviet, propose the budget and guide the economy, issue decisions and ordinances and verify their execution; the decisions and ordinances of the Council of Ministers of the USSR were binding throughout the USSR. It defined internal policies and oversaw operation of state administration, oversaw the country's economic development, directed the activities and development of public services, performed other activities which conformed to the provisions of the Constitution and applicable legislation.
The Government controlled foreign trade and had directed the "general development" of the Soviet armed forces. The Government managed the internal sphere of the Union of Soviet of Socialist Republics' social policy, it was responsible for implementing procedures which would either promote or ensure the well-being of Soviet citizens by economic and economic development. The government was responsible for monetary, pollution, price wages and social security policies, controlled all All-Union institutions and All-Republican institutions. For instance, the Government controlled the State Bank of the USSR and was responsible for the organisation of state insurance and accounting, it was the Government which drafted the five-year plans for economic and social development, through its control of the State Planning Committee, the country's budget, through its control of the Ministry of Finance. Both the five-year plan and the budget needed approval from the Supreme Soviet to be implemented, it was responsible for public order and the protection of its citizens.
The Government was responsible to the Soviet Parliament, the parliament could in theory force the resignation of the Government as a whole or any Government appointees by a simple majority vote. The Premier and the members of the Government were responsible jointly for decisions passed by the Government and were responsible for their respective portfolios; the Premiers of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet heads of state, appointed government ministers, the appointment was approved by the Supreme Soviet. The Premier could recommend civil servants to the Presidium, which could either pass or reject the nominee. List of heads of state of the Soviet Union Premier of the Soviet Union List of heads of government of Russia List of Governments of the Soviet Union Governments of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics from 1917–1964 and 1964–1991
Russia the Russian Federation, is a transcontinental country in Eastern Europe and North Asia. At 17,125,200 square kilometres, Russia is by far or by a considerable margin the largest country in the world by area, covering more than one-eighth of the Earth's inhabited land area, the ninth most populous, with about 146.77 million people as of 2019, including Crimea. About 77 % of the population live in the European part of the country. Russia's capital, Moscow, is one of the largest cities in the world and the second largest city in Europe. Extending across the entirety of Northern Asia and much of Eastern Europe, Russia spans eleven time zones and incorporates a wide range of environments and landforms. From northwest to southeast, Russia shares land borders with Norway, Estonia, Latvia and Poland, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, China and North Korea, it shares maritime borders with Japan by the Sea of Okhotsk and the U. S. state of Alaska across the Bering Strait. However, Russia recognises two more countries that border it, Abkhazia and South Ossetia, both of which are internationally recognized as parts of Georgia.
The East Slavs emerged as a recognizable group in Europe between the 3rd and 8th centuries AD. Founded and ruled by a Varangian warrior elite and their descendants, the medieval state of Rus arose in the 9th century. In 988 it adopted Orthodox Christianity from the Byzantine Empire, beginning the synthesis of Byzantine and Slavic cultures that defined Russian culture for the next millennium. Rus' disintegrated into a number of smaller states; the Grand Duchy of Moscow reunified the surrounding Russian principalities and achieved independence from the Golden Horde. By the 18th century, the nation had expanded through conquest and exploration to become the Russian Empire, the third largest empire in history, stretching from Poland on the west to Alaska on the east. Following the Russian Revolution, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic became the largest and leading constituent of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the world's first constitutionally socialist state; the Soviet Union played a decisive role in the Allied victory in World War II, emerged as a recognized superpower and rival to the United States during the Cold War.
The Soviet era saw some of the most significant technological achievements of the 20th century, including the world's first human-made satellite and the launching of the first humans in space. By the end of 1990, the Soviet Union had the world's second largest economy, largest standing military in the world and the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, twelve independent republics emerged from the USSR: Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and the Baltic states regained independence: Estonia, Lithuania, it is governed as a federal semi-presidential republic. Russia's economy ranks as the twelfth largest by nominal GDP and sixth largest by purchasing power parity in 2018. Russia's extensive mineral and energy resources are the largest such reserves in the world, making it one of the leading producers of oil and natural gas globally; the country is one of the five recognized nuclear weapons states and possesses the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction.
Russia is a great power as well as a regional power and has been characterised as a potential superpower. It is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and an active global partner of ASEAN, as well as a member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the G20, the Council of Europe, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the World Trade Organization, as well as being the leading member of the Commonwealth of Independent States, the Collective Security Treaty Organization and one of the five members of the Eurasian Economic Union, along with Armenia, Belarus and Kyrgyzstan; the name Russia is derived from Rus', a medieval state populated by the East Slavs. However, this proper name became more prominent in the history, the country was called by its inhabitants "Русская Земля", which can be translated as "Russian Land" or "Land of Rus'". In order to distinguish this state from other states derived from it, it is denoted as Kievan Rus' by modern historiography.
The name Rus itself comes from the early medieval Rus' people, Swedish merchants and warriors who relocated from across the Baltic Sea and founded a state centered on Novgorod that became Kievan Rus. An old Latin version of the name Rus' was Ruthenia applied to the western and southern regions of Rus' that were adjacent to Catholic Europe; the current name of the country, Россия, comes from the Byzantine Greek designation of the Rus', Ρωσσία Rossía—spelled Ρωσία in Modern Greek. The standard way to refer to citizens of Russia is rossiyane in Russian. There are two Russian words which are commonly
The Moscow Kremlin, or the Kremlin, is a fortified complex in the center of Moscow, overlooking the Moskva River to the south, Saint Basil's Cathedral and Red Square to the east, the Alexander Garden to the west. It is the best known of the kremlins and includes five palaces, four cathedrals, the enclosing Kremlin Wall with Kremlin towers. In addition, within this complex is the Grand Kremlin Palace, the Tsar's Moscow residence; the complex now serves as the official residence of the President of the Russian Federation and as a museum with 2,746,405 visitors in 2017. The name "Kremlin" means "fortress inside a city", is also used metonymically to refer to the government of the Russian Federation in a similar sense to how "White House" refers to the Executive Office of the President of the United States, it referred to the government of the Soviet Union and its highest members. The term "Kremlinology" refers to the study of Russian politics; the site had been continuously inhabited by Finno-Ugric peoples since the 2nd century BC.
The Slavs occupied the south-western portion of Borovitsky Hill as early as the 11th century, as evidenced by a metropolitan seal from the 1090s, unearthed by Soviet archaeologists in the area. The Vyatichi built a fortified structure on the hill where the Neglinnaya River flowed into the Moskva River. Up to the 14th century, the site was known as the'grad of Moscow'; the word "Kremlin" was first recorded in 1331. The grad was extended by Prince Yuri Dolgorukiy in 1156, destroyed by the Mongols in 1237 and rebuilt in oak in 1339. Dmitri Donskoi replaced the oak walls with a strong citadel of white limestone in 1366–1368 on the basic foundations of the current walls. Dmitri's son Vasily I resumed construction of cloisters in the Kremlin; the newly built Cathedral of the Annunciation was painted by Theophanes the Greek, Andrei Rublev, Prokhor in 1406. The Chudov Monastery was founded by Metropolitan Alexis. Grand Prince Ivan III organised the reconstruction of the Kremlin, inviting a number of skilled architects from Renaissance Italy, including Petrus Antonius Solarius, who designed the new Kremlin wall and its towers, Marcus Ruffus who designed the new palace for the prince.
It was during his reign that three extant cathedrals of the Kremlin, the Deposition Church, the Palace of Facets were constructed. The highest building of the city and Muscovite Russia was the Ivan the Great Bell Tower, built in 1505–08 and augmented to its present height in 1600; the Kremlin walls as they now appear were built between 1485 and 1495. Spasskie gates of the wall still bear a dedication in Latin praising Petrus Antonius Solarius for the design. After construction of the new kremlin walls and churches was complete, the monarch decreed that no structures should be built in the immediate vicinity of the citadel; the Kremlin was separated from the walled merchant town by a 30-meter-wide moat, over which Saint Basil's Cathedral was constructed during the reign of Ivan the Terrible. The same tsar renovated some of his grandfather's palaces, added a new palace and cathedral for his sons, endowed the Trinity metochion inside the Kremlin; the metochion was administrated by the Trinity Monastery and contained the graceful tower church of St. Sergius, described by foreigners as one of the finest in the country.
During the Time of Troubles, the Kremlin was held by the Polish forces for two years, between 21 September 1610 and 26 October 1612. The Kremlin's liberation by the volunteer army of prince Dmitry Pozharsky and Kuzma Minin paved the way for the election of Mikhail Romanov as the new tsar. During his reign and that of his son Alexis and grandson Feodor, the eleven-domed Upper Saviour Cathedral, Armorial Gate, Terem Palace, Amusement Palace and the palace of Patriarch Nikon were built. Following the death of Alexis's son and the Moscow Uprising of 1682, Tsar Peter escaped with much difficulty from the Kremlin and as a result developed a dislike for it. Three decades Peter abandoned the residence of his forefathers for his new capital, Saint Petersburg. Although still used for coronation ceremonies, the Kremlin was abandoned and neglected until 1773, when Catherine the Great engaged Vasili Bazhenov to build her new residence there. Bazhenov produced a bombastic Neoclassical design on a heroic scale, which involved the demolition of several churches and palaces, as well as a portion of the Kremlin wall.
After the preparations were over, construction was delayed due to lack of funds. Several years the architect Matvey Kazakov supervised the reconstruction of the dismantled sections of the wall and of some structures of the Chudov Monastery, built the spacious and luxurious Offices of the Senate, since adapted for use as the principal workplace of the President of Russia. During the Imperial period, from the early 18th and until the late 19th century, the Kremlin walls were traditionally painted white, in accordance with fashion. French forces occupied the Kremlin from 2 September to 11 October 1812, following the French invasion of Russia; when Napoleon retreated from Moscow, he ordered the whole Kremlin to be blown up. The Kremlin Arsenal, several portions of the Kremlin Wall and several wall towers were destroyed by explosions and the Faceted Chamber and other churches were damaged by fire. Explosions continued for
The Republic of Sakha is a federal Russian republic. It had a population of 958,528 at the 2010 Census ethnic Yakuts and Russians. Comprising half the Far Eastern Federal District, it is the largest subnational governing body by area in the world at 3,083,523 square kilometers, its capital is the city of Yakutsk. It is known for its extreme and severe climate, with the lowest temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere being recorded in Verkhoyansk and Delyankir, regular winter averages being below −35 °C in Yakutsk; the hypercontinental tendencies result in warm summers for much of the republic. Borders: internal: Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, Magadan Oblast, Khabarovsk Krai, Amur Oblast, Zabaykalsky Krai, Irkutsk Oblast, Krasnoyarsk Krai. Water: Arctic Ocean. Highest point: Peak Pobeda, Mus-Khaya Mountain Peak Maximum N->S distance: 2,500 km Maximum E->W distance: 2,000 km Sakha stretches to the Henrietta Island in the far north and is washed by the Laptev and Eastern Siberian Seas of the Arctic Ocean.
These waters, the coldest and iciest of all seas in the Northern Hemisphere, are covered by ice for 9–10 months of the year. New Siberian Islands are a part of the republic's territory. After Nunavut was separated from Canada's Northwest Territories, Sakha became the largest subnational entity in the world, with an area of 3,083,523 square kilometers smaller than the territory of India. Sakha can be divided into three great vegetation belts. About 40% of Sakha lies above the Arctic circle and all of it is covered by permafrost which influences the region's ecology and limits forests in the southern region. Arctic and subarctic tundra define the middle region, where lichen and moss grow as great green carpets and are favorite pastures for reindeer. In the southern part of the tundra belt, scattered stands of dwarf Siberian pine and larch grow along the rivers. Below the tundra is the vast taiga forest region. Larch trees dominate in the north and stands of fir and pine begin to appear in the south.
Taiga forests cover about 47% of Sakha and 90% of the cover is larch. The Sakha Republic is the site of Pleistocene Park, a project directed at recreating Pleistocene tundra grasslands by stimulating the growth of grass with the introduction of animals which thrived in the region during the late Pleistocene — early Holocene period. Sakha Republic is the only subject of Russia. Sakha spans three time zones: Yakutsk Time Zone. Covers the republic's territory to the west of the Lena River as well as the territories of the districts located on both sides of the Lena River. Vladivostok Time Zone. Covers most of the republic's territory located between 140 ° E longitude. Districts: Oymyakonsky, Ust-Yansky, Verkhoyansky. Magadan Time Zone. Covers most of the republic's territory located east of 140°E longitude. Districts: Abyysky, Momsky, Srednekolymsky, Verkhnekolymsky. Navigable Lena River, as it moves northward, includes hundreds of small tributaries located in the Verkhoyansk Range. Other major rivers include: Vilyuy River Lena River tributary Olenyok River Aldan River Lena River tributary Kolyma River Indigirka River Alazeya River Amga River Aldan River tributary Olyokma River Lena River tributary Markha River Vilyuy River tributary Tyung River Vilyuy River tributary Maya River Aldan River tributary Anabar River Yana River Morkoka River Markha River tributary Uchur River Aldan River tributary Linde River Lena River tributary Nyuya River Lena River tributary Selennyakh River Indigirka River tributary There are over 800,000 lakes in the republic.
Major lakes and reservoirs include: Lake Mogotoyevo Lake Nedzheli Lake Nerpichye Vilyuyskoye Reservoir Sakha's greatest mountain range, the Verkhoyansk Range, runs parallel and east of the Lena River, forming a great arc that begins in the Sea of Okhotsk and ends in the Laptev Sea. The Chersky Range has the highest peak in Sakha, Peak Pobeda; the second highest peak is Peak Mus-Khaya reaching 3,011 m. The Stanovoi Range borders Sakha in the south; the Republic's extensive coastline contains a number of peninsulas. The soil contains large reserves of oil, coal, gold, tin and many others. Sakha p
The Diamond Fund is a unique collection of gems and natural nuggets, which are stored and exhibited in the Kremlin Armoury in Russia. The Fund was opened in 1967 and its collection dates back to the Russian Crown treasury instituted by Emperor Peter I of Russia in 1719, it is a part of Moscow Kremlin Museums. The gem collection of Peter I, established in 1719, was stored in the Diamond Chamber in the Winter Palace. All succeeding monarchs added their contributions to the Chamber. A 1922 study by Alexander Fersman identified 85% of all exhibits to be from 1719–1855, to emperors Peter I through Nicholas I, only 15% attributed from the last three emperors. Catherine the Great exhibited a particular interest for expensive rocks naming her stallion "Diamond." The Diamond Fund received the most contributions from her than any other monarch. Preservation and looting of Imperial treasures after the Russian Revolution of 1917 are a matter of controversy and speculation; the Imperial collection was moved from Saint Petersburg to Moscow during World War I.
The treasure was first exhibited to the public in November 1967. A short-term show, it became a permanent exhibition in 1968. During the late Soviet period, the value of the Fund's collection was estimated to be $7 billion; the Russian State retains the monopoly for mining and distribution of gemstones, as set by the 1998 law "On precious metals and precious stones". Diamond Fund operations are regulated by the 1999 presidential decree; the Diamond Fund is part of a larger State Fund of Precious Stones, managed by the Ministry of Finance, accumulates the most valuable items, in particular All raw diamonds exceeding 50 carats All cut diamonds exceeding 20 carats, cut diamonds of exceptional quality exceeding 6 carats All raw emeralds, sapphires exceeding 30 carats raw or 20 carats cut Unique nuggets, amber and jewellery 2006 – "The Creator", mined in Yakutia in 2004. Third largest raw diamond in the Fund, 298.48 carats 2003 – golden nugget, 33 kg 1989 – "Alexander Pushkin", second-largest raw diamond, 320.65 carats 1980 – "XXVI Congress of CPSU", largest raw diamond, 342.57 carats Orlov diamond, 189.62 carats Shah diamond, 88.7 carats, first inscription dated 1591, a gift from the Shah of Persia in 1829 Flat portrait diamond, 25 carats Red spinel, set in the Imperial Crown of Russia, 398.72 carats, purchased in China in 1676 Sapphire, 260.37 carats Colombian emerald, 136.25 carats Olive-green chrysolite, 192.6 carats Imperial Crown of Russia made for Catherine II, 1762 The Daffodil Bouquet The Blue Fountain "The Great Triangle", gold, 36.2 kg "The Camel", gold, 9.28 kg "Mephisto", gold, 20.25 g The Diamond Fund is exhibited in the Kremlin Armoury building.
For visitors, it is accessible only through tours of fixed duration due to the limited space inside the Fund. Tours in Russian are organized daily, at twenty-minute intervals. Foreign visitors can receive an audioguide in English, French, Italian, Chinese or Japanese. List of diamonds Alrosa Pink diamond Official website of the Diamond Fund Information for visitors History of the Diamond Fund from the Alexander Palace website