Tag Archives: Cloudbreak

SIMPEC awarded significant Cloudbreak crusher contract from Fortescue

SIMPEC’s relationship with Fortescue Metals Group continues to strengthen, with the engineering contractor set to replace two Metso Outotec Nordberg® C160 jaw crushers at the miner’s Cloudbreak iron ore operation in the Pilbara of Western Australia.

The WestStar Industrial Ltd subsidiary’s new contract for the Hopper 5 Jaw Crusher Replacement project is the first win directly from Fortescue but is far from the first time the company has stepped on site at one of its mines. SIMPEC has previously carried out work on its operations after being subcontracted by the likes of Central Systems, Energy Power Systems, ATCO and others.

The scope of the jaw crusher contract includes removal of all structural and mechanical items required to access the jaw crushers, followed by reinstatement on completion of the change out. It also includes maintenance works and modifications to the existing Hopper 5 hoppers, chutes and screens, SIMPEC said.

Worth A$2.1 million ($1.6 million), the vertical contract has commenced immediately, with works expected to be completed in April.

SIMPEC Managing Director, Mark Dimasi, said: “It has been a long-term goal of SIMPEC to work directly for Fortescue and to break into the field of sustaining capital works. By building our sustaining capital portfolio, SIMPEC aims to achieve a more stable cash flow as well as provide continuity for our workforce.

“This is a very proud moment for the team, and we look forward to successful completion of this project and what we hope will be a long-term relationship with Fortescue.”

Fortescue employs SRG Global for maintenance and shutdown services

SRG Global has been awarded a five-year term contract from Fortescue Metals Group to initially provide rope access and electrical maintenance requirements across the company’s mine, rail and port locations throughout Western Australia.

The A$150 million ($117 million) term contract, which has already commenced, is a Master Agreement for Maintenance and Shutdown Services, the company said.

Locations for SRG’s work include the Christmas Creek (pictured), Cloudbreak, Firetail, Kings Valley and Eliwana mine sites, along with its supporting rail and port infrastructure.

SRG Global Managing Director, David Macgeorge, said: “We are delighted to be selected as a key partner to FMG and to provide critical maintenance and shutdown services across their Pilbara operations for the next five years. This is another significant step forward in our strategy to build a portfolio of annuity earnings, with quality clients, to deliver long-term sustainable growth.”

RDG subsidiaries win A$26 million of work from Fortescue, Tianye SXO Gold Mining

Resource Development Group’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Central Systems Pty Ltd, is to design and construct an overpass at Fortescue Metals Group’s Cloudbreak mine site as part of an agreement with the miner’s Chichester Metals subsidiary.

The overpass is due for completion in late November, RDG said.

Cloudbreak is one of two mines (Christmas Creek being the other) within the Chichester Hub in the Chichester Ranges of Western Australia. The hub has an annual production capacity of 100 Mt/y of iron ore from three ore processing facilities (OPF).

Cloudbreak also hosts a 5 km relocatable conveyor (pictured), which includes two semi-mobile primary crushing stations and feeds directly into the Cloudbreak OPF.

Separately, RDG’s 80%‐owned subsidiary, Crushing Service Solutions, has been awarded a crushing and screening services contract with Tianye SXO Gold Mining Pty Ltd to provide these services in order to feed the Minjar gold plant near Southern Cross in Western Australia.

This contract will have a duration of approximately 12 months, RDG said.

The aggregate amount of these contract awards is A$26 million ($17.9 million), according to RDG.

FMG, Sodexo and Aboriginal businesses enter into ‘innovative contract model’

Fortescue Metals Group has entered into an “innovative contract model” that will see Aboriginal businesses carry out catering, accommodation management and lifestyle and recreation services for the Cloudbreak and Karntama villages in the Chichester Hub and Hamilton Village, in Port Hedland, Western Australia.

The Village Facilities Management agreements will be facilitated thorough a pact between Sodexo Remote Sites Australia, a food services and facilities management company, and three Aboriginal businesses owned by Pilbara Native Title groups, FMG said.

With a collective award value of A$165 million ($113 million) over three years, the contracts involve three individual unincorporated joint ventures agreements with Sodexo and 100% owned Aboriginal businesses Palyku Enterprises Pty Ltd, Karlka Facilities Management Pty Ltd and Kariyarra Hospitality Services Pty Ltd.

Fortescue Chief Executive Officer, Elizabeth Gaines, said: “Fortescue’s Aboriginal procurement initiative and approach to providing opportunities to Aboriginal people has empowered our Native Title partners by building the capability and capacity of Aboriginal businesses.

“These contracts are awarded on merit. Each of our business partners have competitively demonstrated their commercial ability to deliver the contracted services and by working within a joint venture, the Aboriginal businesses have the support and opportunity to increase their active participation and build long term sustainability.”

Across the three Fortescue sites, Sodexo will provide a range of village services, including accommodation services management to approximately 3,000 workers in a typical week, catering services – serving up to 8,500 meals daily, industrial cleaning, retail, health and wellbeing, transport and airport management services, as well as trade-based maintenance services delivery at Hamilton, Sodexo said.

The announcement is an important milestone for Sodexo after acquiring Morris Corp two years ago, which expanded Sodexo’s portfolio of facilities management operations in Australia, the company said. Morris had been Fortescue’s contractor since 2009.

Sodexo Chief Executive Officer of Energy and Resources Asia-Pacific, Darren Hedley, said: “Our ongoing work with Fortescue showed both companies were aligned in improving quality of village life, and valued strong engagement with communities.

“We’re looking forward to working with our joint venture partners, Kariyarra Group, Palyku Group and Karlka Group, and Fortescue as we continue to identify opportunities for constant improvements across the sites to deliver the best outcomes for Fortescue, with a priority being maintaining safety and quality operations for its growing workforce.”

Fortescue says it has awarded A$2.4 billion in contracts to over 115 Aboriginal businesses and joint venture partners since 2011 through its Billion Opportunities initiative.

FMG enlists Pentium Hydro for more boring at Pilbara iron ore ops

Vysarn’s wholly owned subsidiary, Pentium Hydro, has won further work with Fortescue Metals Group following an initial order for the iron ore miner’s Chichester operations in the Pilbara of Western Australia.

The two companies have entered into an agreement for hydrogeological borefield drilling and construction services for both the Chichester and Solomon operations.

The contract will see Pentium pocket estimated revenue, based on the initial scope of work, of A$13.3 million ($9 million) for a two-year fixed scope contract with a one-year extension option.

The scope of work as defined under the contract is to provide the drilling and installation of production, injection and monitoring bores to support mining and exploration activities across multiple locations, within the Pilbara region. As defined in the contract these sites are inclusive of Cloudbreak, Christmas Creek, Solomon and Eliwana.

Pentium completed the mobilisation of the first Dual Rotary (DR) drill rig and associated auxiliary plant at Chichester in October 2019 under a previously agreed initial purchase order from FMG.

Pentium anticipates the mobilisation of the second DR rig under the new contract during the month of January.

It said: “Revenue from these works is based on contract key performance indicators for the number of production and monitoring bores and is also subject to metres drilled and drill rates.”

In addition to this work with FMG, Pentium Hydro also has rigs and equipment out at BHP’s Olympic Dam mine, Roy Hill’s iron ore operation and AngloGold Ashanti/Independence Group’s Tropicana gold mine.

FMG to lead from the front in Pilbara renewable energy pursuit

Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) has signed an agreement with Alinta Energy that will see up to 100% of daytime stationary energy requirements at its Chichester Hub iron ore operations, in the Pilbara of Western Australia, powered by renewable energy.

The Chichester Solar Gas Hybrid project will see the construction of a 60 MW solar photovoltaic generation facility at the Chichester Hub, comprising Fortescue’s Christmas Creek and Cloudbreak iron ore mining operations.

In addition, an approximately 60-km transmission line linking the Christmas Creek and Cloudbreak mining operations with Alinta Energy’s Newman gas-fired power station and a 35 MW battery facility will be constructed, with completion due mid-2021.

FMG said: “Once completed, up to 100% of daytime stationary energy requirements at the Chichester Hub will be provided by solar generation, with the remaining power requirements to be met through the integrated battery storage and gas power station facilities.”

The project is expected to displace around 100 million litres annually of diesel used in the existing Christmas Creek and Cloudbreak power stations, according to FMG.

Fortescue Chief Executive Officer, Elizabeth Gaines, said: “Reliable and competitive energy generation remains an important consideration for the mining sector in Western Australia and as a significant consumer of energy, we continue to identify opportunities that have the potential to lower our costs while also improving our carbon footprint.

“This landmark project is a first on this scale for the Pilbara and will reduce carbon emissions from stationary generation by around 40% at Fortescue’s Christmas Creek and Cloudbreak mining operations, while driving long-term sustainable cost reductions to maintain Fortescue’s global cost leadership position.”

Gaines added that the agreement with Alinta Energy represented a further step in the creation of Fortescue’s Pilbara Energy Connect project, which builds on the company’s previous energy initiatives, including the construction of the Fortescue River Gas Pipeline, the conversion of the Solomon Power Station from diesel to gas generation, as well as a partnership agreement with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation to develop and commercialise hydrogen technologies.

As part of the agreement, FMG will invest an estimated $250 million in energy transmission infrastructure to complete the integration of Fortescue’s iron ore operations in the Pilbara into an efficient energy network.

Alinta Energy Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Jeff Dimery, said: “We’d like to thank Fortescue and our Chichester Hub project partners for helping to make the company’s long-held vision for a cleaner and more connected energy supply for the Pilbara a reality.

“There’s a lot to be proud of in this project. Working together, we are on the cusp of demonstrating that renewables can drive Australia’s economic powerhouses forward–even for remote and complex industrial applications.”

Alinta Energy will receive federal funding of A$24.2 million ($16.5 million) from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and A$90 million from the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF), upon satisfaction of standard conditions.

The NAIF loan remains subject to ratification from the Western Australian Government.

NAIF Chief Executive Officer, Laurie Walker said: “NAIF’s A$90 million loan for this project will help provide low emission renewable energy generation for large off-grid customers and paves the way towards the creation of a more interconnected regional energy grid in the Pilbara.

“The project innovatively combines solar and gas fired power to compensate for the variability of solar sourced energy. This investment by NAIF offers the opportunity to make a long-term difference to the Pilbara.”

ARENA Chief Executive Officer, Darren Miller, said: “The project could unlock further investment in renewable energy in the mining sector and other remote and energy intensive operations.

“Alinta’s project will demonstrate how renewable energy solutions can deliver critical energy requirements for major mining operations and help reduce emissions. This will also show how interconnection of loads and different generation and storage -including solar, gas and battery storage -can provide secure and reliable electricity.”

Fortescue on the lookout for more automation and AI opportunities

In Fortescue Metals Group’s half-year report to end-December, the company provided an update on its haul truck automation retrofit project at its Chichester Hub iron ore operations, while commenting on the performance of its innovative relocatable conveyor.

For the six months to December 31, FMG shipped 82.7 Mt (84.5 Mt a year ago) of iron ore from its Pilbara operations, generated a net profit after tax of $644 million ($693 million a year ago) and posted underlying earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation of $1.6 billion ($1.8 billion a year ago).

As of December 31, 2018, FMG said 44 trucks had been converted with autonomous haulage technology (AHS) at Chichester Hub as part of its automation rollout.

Once complete, the conversion of approximately 100 haul trucks at its Christmas Creek and Cloudbreak operations (which both make up the Chichester Hub) will see Fortescue become the first iron ore operation in the world to have a fully autonomous operating fleet, it said.

The company also provided some commentary around the relocatable conveyor it has been using to cut costs and improve productivity at its Cloudbreak mine.

The conveyor, commissioned in May 2018 by RCR Tomlinson, doubled its throughput in the September quarter, according to FMG.

Fortescue said: “The five-kilometre conveyor includes a mobile primary crushing station that feeds directly into the ore processing facility. The relocatable conveyor and mobile crushing facilities can be positioned in close proximity to pits and relocated once mining in that area is complete.”

FMG concluded on innovation: “The company continues to look for opportunities for automation and artificial intelligence to drive greater efficiency across the business, including the use of data to predict outcomes and optimise performance, the expansion of autonomous mining and the application of relocatable conveyor technology.”

Fortescue’s new iron ore blend on its way to China steel mill

The maiden shipment of Fortescue Metals Group’s new 60.1% Fe content product, West Pilbara Fines, has recently left Herb Elliott Port in Port Hedland, Western Australia, bound for Hunan Valin Steel in China.

Fortescue will produce 5-10 Mt of West Pilbara Fines in the year to end-June 2019 by blending higher iron, low alumina ore from the western pits at the Cloudbreak operations with ore from the Firetail mine. This involves the use of an innovative 5 km relocatable conveyor, provided by RCR Tomlinson.

When Fortescue’s$1.275 billion Eliwana iron ore project begins production in December 2020, production of West Pilbara Fines is expected to ramp up to 40 Mt/y.

Fortescue Chief Executive Officer, Elizabeth Gaines, said: “The production of West Pilbara Fines demonstrates the flexibility of our wholly–owned, integrated mining operations and infrastructure and the agility of our processing and blending strategy.

“For the last decade, we have delivered a range of differentiated products with a high value in use for our customers. As we look out to financial year 2019 and beyond, West Pilbara Fines will further enhance the range of ores available, as we continue to ensure that our quality control and product consistency are maintained at the highest levels for our customers in China, Asia and Europe.”

Chairman of Hunan Valin, Dr Cao Zhiaqiang, said: “We are very pleased to be the first steel mill customer for West Pilbara Fines. Fortescue continues to understand and respond to the market’s needs by expanding its product suite, while remaining focussed on delivering high value in use products.”