Tag Archives: Mitsui & Co

Anglo American commences first longwall shear at Aquila met coal mine

Anglo American’s new Aquila mine has achieved its first longwall shear of steelmaking metallurgical coal on schedule and on budget, marking the project’s final stages of construction and commissioning, it says.

The Aquila mine, located near Middlemount in Central Queensland in Australia, extends the life of Anglo American’s existing Capcoal underground operations by seven years, after the company’s nearby Grasstree mine reached its end of life in recent weeks.

Themba Mkhwanazi, CEO of Bulk Commodities, said: “We have delivered the Aquila project on time and within our budgeted attributable cost of $226 million. This new mine will have a total average annual saleable production of around five million tonnes of premium quality hard coking coal and benefits from low capital intensity as we are using the existing infrastructure and systems from our adjacent operations. Aquila offers us highly attractive returns and margins at conservative long term consensus prices.”

Tyler Mitchelson, CEO of Anglo American’s Metallurgical Coal business, said: “Safely starting up longwall mining at Aquila Mine on our original schedule, despite the effects of the pandemic, is an important milestone for our Metallurgical Coal business and will support our ongoing contribution to both the Middlemount community, and Queensland’s economy. The mine uses our existing infrastructure at our Capcoal complex and supports around 600 ongoing operational roles for our Queensland-based workforce, including providing continuity of employment for our Grasstree mining team.”

The Aquila Mine has been developed as one of Australia’s most technologically advanced underground mines, leveraging Anglo American’s advancements in underground automation technology, remote operations and data analytics, the company says. The mine features two longwalls, allowing operations to continue without the downtime usually required for longwall moves. Both longwalls are fully remote-capable and will be sequentially operated from a site-based remote operations centre on the surface of the mine.

Anglo American’s Capcoal complex comprises Capcoal Open Cut Mine, Grasstree Mine, Aquila Mine, the Coal Handling and Preparation Plant and associated infrastructure. Aquila is owned 70% by Anglo American and 30% by Mitsui & Co. Ltd.

XEMC, ABB, 3ME, BluVein, Hitachi and more make Charge On Innovation shortlist

The Charge On Innovation Challenge, formally launched on May 13 as a push for industry, OEMs and other stakeholders to come up with workable solutions for faster charging of large surface electric mining trucks and spearheaded by Austmine, has shortlisted 21 vendors to progress to the next phase of the challenge.

These 21 vendors are matched by 21 mining companies who have joined as patrons. This includes founding patrons BHP, Rio Tinto and Vale, alongside Roy Hill, Teck, Boliden, Thiess, Antofagasta Minerals, Codelco, Freeport McMoRan, Gold Fields, Yancoal, Barrick Gold, CITIC Pacific Mining, Evolution Mining, Harmony Gold, Mineral Resources Ltd, Newcrest Mining, OZ Minerals, South32 and Syncrude.

The 21 vendors to have made the cut were selected from more than 80 organisations that submitted expressions of interest.

The list of companies to make it to the next stage (one of which who declined to be named) includes:

  • 3ME Technology;
  • ABB;
  • Altreonic-Kurt.energy;
  • Ampcontrol/Tritium;
  • Australian Turntables;
  • BluVein;
  • DB Engineering & Consulting with Echion Technologies;
  • Farmboro Consulting;
  • Hitachi Group;
  • Infosys;
  • InvertedPower Pty Ltd;
  • IT & ES Industries (OZ) Pty Ltd;
  • L&T Technology Services;
  • Midwest Energy Pvt. Ltd;
  • Mitsui & Co. with Forsee Power and AVL;
  • Saft;
  • Shell Consortium;
  • Siemens;
  • Solar System Resources Corporation Sp. z o. o.; and
  • Xiangtan Electric Manufacturing Group Heavy-Duty Equipment Co. Ltd;

The next phase of the challenge will comprise of a pitch session followed by a deep dive into the innovative solutions proposed to charge haul trucks powered by battery instead of diesel, Austmine says.

Water treatment plant starts up at Anglo American’s Aquila met coal project

Anglo American’s Metallurgical Coal business says it is now operating the first of two state-of-the art reverse osmosis (RO) water treatment plants at its Aquila project in the Bowen Basin, Queensland.

The aim of the RO plants is to reduce the use of fresh water in its mining operations.

Chief Executive Officer of Anglo American’s Metallurgical Coal business, Tyler Mitchelson, said the A$5 million ($3.9 million) water treatment system was currently treating two megalitres of mine affected water (MAW) a day and supporting construction of the Aquila Mine, near Middlemount in central Queensland.

“A key target in Anglo American’s global Sustainable Mining Plan is to reduce our reliance on fresh water by 50% by 2030 across our mine sites, and I’m pleased to say Aquila is currently sourcing recycled water during construction of the mine,” Mitchelson said.

“A planned second RO plant will to be used to recycle a further 2.4 megalitres of MAW – once Aquila becomes operational in early 2022, more than doubling capacity and helping to reduce the reliance on water from local sources during times of drought.

“Aquila will be one of the world’s most technologically advanced underground mines and will showcase our innovation-led approach to sustainable mining. The project is currently supporting 500 jobs.”

Aquila, owned 70% by Anglo and 30% by Mitsui & Co Ltd, will extend the life of Anglo’s existing Capcoal underground operations by six years and continue to use the associated infrastructure at the Capcoal complex as its nearby Grasstree Mine approaches end of life, Anglo says. The mine will also continue to adopt Anglo American’s FutureSmart Mining™ program, which applies innovative thinking and technological advances to address mining’s major operational and sustainability challenges, the company said. One of the initiatives the company is working on as part of this is remote operation of the longwall; a process the company has trialled at some of its other Bowen Basin coal mines.

Aquila’s Project Director, Tony Willmott, said the A$240 million Aquila Mine was committed to awarding contracts locally.

“Our Aquila project is progressing well, with support from its Queensland-based workforce and contracting partners. More than 90% of our Aquila contracts have been awarded to Queensland-based suppliers,” Willmott said. “Aquila’s integrated network of pipes and pumps is securing the distribution of high-quality water which is necessary in metallurgical coal mining for equipment cooling and coal cutting operations.”

Vale, Kobe Steel and Mitsui & Co to combine ‘green’ iron-making solutions

Vale says it has reached a non-binding heads of agreement with Kobe Steel and Mitsui & Co to establish a new venture to supply low CO2 iron metallics and iron-making solutions to the steel industry.

The heads of agreement establishes the preliminary terms and conditions for the creation of a new venture with the objective of delivering low CO2 metallics to the global market, providing new technological solutions to its clients, Vale said.

“An evaluation period has already begun to deepen the cooperation and to gauge market demand for several existing and new steel-making solutions prior to a final agreement for the creation of the NewVen,” it added.

Vale has previously declared 2030 targets for Scope 1 and 2 emissions in line with a commitment to the Paris Agreement.

Steel production, part of Vale’s Scope 3 emissions, while essential for people’s daily lives, generates considerable CO2 emissions. “Vale is committed to contribute with its steel-making clients in this challenge of reducing their carbon footprint,” it said.

The new venture will use existing and new low-CO2 iron making technology such as Tecnored®️ technology and the MIDREX®️ Process.

Tecnored is a 100%-owned Vale subsidiary focused on developing a low carbon pig iron process through the use of energy sources, such as biomass, syn-gas and hydrogen, that emits less CO2 than the traditional coal and coke iron-making process. Using biomass, the path to economic carbon neutrality may be achieved in the medium term, according to Vale.

MIDREX Technologies, a 100%-owned Kobe Steel subsidiary, is a world leading direct reduction ironmaking (DRI) technology. Each year, MIDREX plants produce more than 60% of the entire world’s DRI (example above) and more than 80% of the DRI produced by all shaft furnace technologies. Since it uses both natural gas and hydrogen as a reductant in the process, its CO2 emission level is much less than compared with a blast furnace.