Rio Tinto Iron Ore has commenced a major sustaining capital project to replace the original stackers at the Paraburdoo mine – stackers are pieces of machinery used to evenly distribute ore into stockpiles. The existing old stackers were part of the mine’s original infrastructure, stacking the very first load of iron ore from Paraburdoo in 1972. In 46 years of operation, they have stacked just over 800 million tons of ore, requiring only minimal structural changes throughout that time. Rio envisage that this project will create almost 100 jobs.
TAKRAF is leading the design and implementation phases of the stacker replacement and has committed to sourcing all material and equipment from well known suppliers with a high preference for local content predominantly in Western Australia. TAKRAF’s office in Perth will manage the entire project, with support provided from the company’s offices in Brisbane and global competence centers. The design of the new stackers is underway and the start of fabrication is scheduled to begin later this year with installation and commissioning completed by early 2020.
The new Paraburdoo stackers boast some advanced new features:
·Modern advances in engineering design and mechanical technology
·Latest generation variable-speed drive control and fiber optic network infrastructure
·Advanced anti-collision system with GPS back up
·Fully automated and monitored from the Rio Tinto Operations Center in Perth/Australia
This project forms part of Rio Tinto’s broader sustaining capital program estimated at US$ 1 billion a year over the next three years.