Biting through iron - Processing iron ore in AustraliaThe Ridges Iron Ore Project
Crushers are on the move: a combination of interlinked mobile machines from Kleemann is now carving itself a niche in what was previously the domain of stationary plants. And with great success, too: the daily output of 10,000 t speaks for itself.
Every year, the Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) extracts 40 million tonnes of iron ore from the Christmas Creek Mine in Western Australia. Eight crushers and screens from Kleemann are also used, working alongside the Wirtgen surface miners which are the main mining machines. Since April 2014, Downer EDI Limited has been contracted by FMG to process the iron ore mined by the surface miners. With an interlinked machine combination comprising four mobile crushers as well as four mobile screens, Downer processes the iron ore into granulations of 0-10 mm. The iron ore is subsequently shipped to China where it is used in steel production.
Christmas Creek Mine, Western Australia
Daily production output
Kleemann gets things moving
A made-to-measure machine combination was assembled for the customer, designed to ensure a high-quality end product. “Specialists from Wirtgen Australia and from the brand headquarters in Göppingen worked together to develop a solution tailored to the customer’s requirements,” explains Greg Lewis, Major Account Manager for Kleemann products at Wirtgen Australia. A mobile machine combination was deliberately chosen instead of a stationary plant. The advantages are obvious: not only can the mobile plant be commissioned in less time than it takes to erect a stationary plant, it can also be flexibly positioned and moved within the mine or to other projects. In addition, the individual machines making up the combination can be used individually when the project is completed.
A great combination
Since the iron ore mined by the Wirtgen surface miners already contains a large proportion of the desired fines, two mobile prescreening plants of type MOBISCREEN MS 21 Z form the first stage of the linked combination. Together, the two screening plants achieve the enormous feed rate of 800 t/h. Iron ore measuring less than 10 mm is sorted out in this processing stage. Around 60% of the feed material displays larger granulations and is transferred from the two pre-screening plants to the jaw crusher MC 120 Z with an inlet measuring 1,200 mm x 800 mm. A mobile cone crusher MCO 13 is used as the second crushing stage following this first crushing stage. The MOBICONE series of crushers are specially designed for use in the second or third crushing stage, being exceptionally powerful, versatile and extremely cost-efficient.
Once the material has passed through the MCO 13 with its cone crusher KX 400, it proceeds to the next screening plant. Iron ore with a granulation of 10 mm or less is discharged via the discharge belt of the MOBISCREEN MS 23 D. The remaining material is processed by yet another MCO 13 in a third crushing stage. From here, the crushed material is returned to the MS 23 D. The most powerful screening machine built by Kleemann, the mobile triple-deck screening unit has a screen measuring 2,300 x 8,000 mm; thanks to its feed rate of up to 800 t/h, it can easily handle the material delivered by two MCO 13 crushers. Any remaining material which has not yet achieved the required fineness is crushed in a fourth crushing stage by one more MCO 13 before being transferred to a second MS 23 D to be screened. The oversize grain is returned from the screen to the MCO 13 for another pass.
10,000 t per day
The machine combination operates 24/7 and the customer is overjoyed with its performance: “With this plant, we can process 800 t of iron ore per hour and currently making almost 10,000 t per day,” explains Kim Walker, Downer’s Crushing Manager. “Wirtgen Australia offers continuous support and is always available to provide help and advice so that everything proceeds smoothly.”´