Vale S11D truckless operation capacity increasing to 100 Mt/y

At Vale Day in London today, the company said it is building its future by expanding the S11D truckless iron ore mining operation to 100 Mt/y, starting in 2022 with capex of about $770 million. Estimated production volumes for 2018 stand at about 55 Mt, increasing to 70-80 Mt in 2019 then to 90 Mt in 2020. Investments at the largest global IPCC operation so far already total $14.3 billion.

In its Q3 2018 results, Vale said S11D had an important role in improving the share of premium products on sales to 79% in the quarter from
77% in Q2 2018, reaching another quarterly production record of 16.1 Mt in Q3 2018 vs 14.3 Mt in Q2 2018, and achieving a production rate of approximately 70% of its nominal capacity in Q3 2018. “The breakthrough technology of the truckless system is proving effective and adherent
to physical planning. Annual production in 2018 will be towards the upper limit of the 50-55 Mt guidance.”

The mine uses four Sandvik Mining Systems PF200 fully mobile crushing stations, each loaded by a Caterpillar 7495 rope shovel. The PF200 conveyor loads a mobile Sandvik beltwagon with 11,500 t/h capacity which in turn loads a main pit conveyor. The Sandvik systems are now managed by FLSmidth following its takeover of the Sandvik Mining Systems business which was completed in March 2018. S11D (including mine, plant and associated logistics – CLN S11D) achieved a combined physical progress of 98% in Q3 2018 with the mine site concluded and 96% progress at the logistic infrastructure sites.