After years-long surveys of the deposit, compiling the documentation and required permits, and a huge investment in the construction of the mine, the first kilograms of Polish amber from the Lublin area were sold at the Jubinale trade show in June.
The mine was launched by Stellarium, which was the first company in Poland to obtain a licence for open-cast extraction of succinite. The mining takes place in the north-eastern part of the Górka Lubartowska amber deposit, which was initially explored in 2004.
“Our adventure with amber in the Lublin area began in 2014. The geological survey report was produced after more than 80 boreholes, both core drill holes and large-diameter (1.5m) ones, were made. We have developed a 3D model of the deposit with innovative survey methods using, for example, an analysis of multispectral satellite images with original mathematical algorithms,” says geologist Jan Paluch, Deputy President of Stellarium. “In order to minimise the environmental impact of the mining, we used a special waterstop barrier in the mine design. This is how we do our mining dry, without disturbing the aquifer system outside the excavation area.”
The company obtained its mining licence in May 2018. The construction of the waterstop barrier and sand mining began in early 2019. Within 5 years, Poland’s first amber and glauconite open-cast mine was built from scratch using innovative technologies in the surveying, mining and processing of raw materials.
“We hope that our mine will keep producing high-quality amber for many years to come, which will undoubtedly have a positive effect on the stabilisation of amber prices in Poland, while amber artists get stable access to legally sourced raw amber from a Polish mine,” Deputy President Jan Paluch presents the company’s history and expansion plans.
Amber (succinite) from the Stellarium deposit has been evaluated as a high quality raw material. Both the small amount of its weathered crust and its warm orange-yellow colours place it among the most commercially valuable varieties. The deposit on which the mine operates has a layered structure. In the upper part, there is quartz sand, with its seams reaching a depth of about 15m. Below is a ca. 7m-thick layer of Eocene glauconite sediment with amber.