AIGS Launches Book on Myanmar’s Mogok Gems Valley

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(IDEX Online) – A new book about Myanmar’s remote Mogok gems valley, the source of some of the world’s finest rubies and sapphires, is being launched at the September Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair.

“MOGOK, The Valley of Precious Stones”, published by the Asian Institute of Gemological Sciences (AIGS), is an exploration narrative, as well as an ethnographic reportage and scientific reference book, according to a statement.

The book was produced by renowned gemologists Emmanuel Fritsch, Franck Notari, Thomas Hainschwang, and Candice Caplan, along with reporter/photographer Jean-Baptiste Rabouan.

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“We conducted five expeditions of unprecedented scale and scope, enabling us to travel through the entire valley, visiting normally inaccessible mines, and collecting precious samples,” said Executive Editor Kennedy Ho, Chairman of AIGS. Many of our observations and conclusions are discoveries that are published here for the first time.

“Experts, teachers and students of gemology will find in this work previously unavailable, often surprising, yet highly precise information on the incredible ‘natural gemstone factory’ that is the Mogok Valley.”

The book is also a plea for socially equitable and environmentally sustainable mining, Kennedy Ho added.

Mogok has a tradition of small-scale mining operations that are currently under threat from mechanized techniques.

The book conveys the beauty of Mogok and its gems. “The photographs taken in the field as well as the laboratory images created using electronic microscopes, reveal an array of unique mineral wonders, including rubies, spinels, peridots, sapphires, and even the mysterious johachidolite, less well-known, but no less resplendent,” Ho said.

The team provides insights into their work, including quality assessment and valuation of rubies, sapphires, spinels, peridots and other treasures of Mogok.

The unprecedented exploration of the Mogok Valley, made possible by the AIGS, has unearthed fascinating new discoveries, resulting in a new reference work for scientists, devotees of precious stones and travelers seeking a unique experience.

The full-color hardcover book with 192 pages, costs US$100, and will be available at the AIGS booths at the Hong Kong fair.

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