Growing our mines
An integrated network is pivotal to reaching our expansion goal. Our 14 mines, three ports and 1400 kilometres of rail work together to bring our plans to life by ensuring uninterrupted operations and the safe and efficient departure of our iron ore products to customers all over the world.
We have approved the development of significant mine developments in the Pilbara as part of our commitment to continued growth in the region.
Initially three of our mines are expanding. These are:
Brockman 4 is an open pit mine with its own processing facilities situated 60 kilometres north west of Tom Price. The mine began operations in 2010 and is expected to nearly double its current capacity of 22 Mt/a to 40 Mt/a by 2013.
Operating with a fly-in fly-out workforce, the development of the Brockman 4 mine will include extending the existing accommodation village, an additional mine fleet, the construction of a primary crusher and a four kilometre overland conveyor.
Western Turner Syncline is an open pit operation and the extracted ore is road trained 20 kilometres to the town of Tom Price for processing. The first ore was mined in 2010 and its current capacity is 6 Mt/a, expected to increase to 15 Mt/a by 2013.
The Western Turner Syncline expansion incorporates the construction of a primary crusher and a 20 kilometre overland conveyor to deliver ore to the Tom Price primary stockpiles. The overland conveyor will be fully enclosed to minimise dust and noise. Within the town of Tom Price the existing infrastructure will be utilised, including the high grade and low grade processing plants, stockyards, train load out and on-site facilities.
Whilst the Western Turner Syncline pit supports a fly-in fly-out (FIFO) workforce, the mine operates as a satellite of our Tom Price operations. The majority of the support functions and all major servicing for mobile equipment will be undertaken from the Tom Price facilities. We will continue to maintain a similar size workforce as at Tom Price operations with minimal changes required.
The development of Western Turner Syncline confirms our commitment to maintain and support a residentially based workforce in Tom Price. Our approach is to utilise the existing infrastructure at Tom Price as the hub for the development of satellite mines in the region.
Nammuldi, also earmarked for expansion, is currently under study with an investment decision expected in late 2011.
In addition, we will achieve growth through sustaining our existing mines and bringing on new mines:
Marandoo is an open pit mine situated 45 kilometres east of Tom Price. Marandoo began operating in 1994 and approval has been given to extend mine operations to 2030. The mines current capacity of 15 Mt/a will be maintained for an estimated 17 years though the introduction of below water table (BWT) mining.
BWT mining involves the construction of a wet ore processing plant and excess water will be managed through an integrated system to supply the town of Tom Price and potentially agriculture on Hamersley Station.
Developments at Marandoo will also involve the construction of a purpose built accommodation village 11 kilometres from the mine site.
The project requires a number of Government and regulatory approvals, all of which have been received or are progressing well and on schedule.
Hope Downs 4 is a new open cut mine with an annual capacity of 15 million tonnes and first production anticipated in 2013.
Significant upgrades to community and social infrastructure and accommodation are also under study to support an expanded workforce in the region.
We want to hear from you if you would like project information or wish to provide us with feedback. Contact our community information line on 1800 992 777.