Construction is more than 65% complete, and big things are happening at South Flank.
With ore already being hauled and stockpiled, the mine’s massive primary crushers are now being slotted into the cliff-like walls of the two run-of-mine (ROM) pads.
Modular design is speeding up and simplifying assembly, but these are some of South Flank’s largest and heaviest components. It takes the site’s biggest crane to ease each 340-tonne ROM bin into position, completing the first link in the ore processing chain.
Stretching away from each crusher across the undulating Pilbara landscape, high-tech overland conveyors pop against the red dirt, thanks to their 24,000 bright yellow composite rollers.
Designed and built in WA, the conveyors total more than 26 kilometres. They are being fitted with the belts that will form the mine’s main arteries, set to carry 80 million tonnes of ore a year to the coarse ore stockpile, inside the rail loop.
Here, more modules have been bolted together to form the Ore Handling Plant, including the secondary crushing and rescreening plants, which rise 30 metres above the stockyards they will feed.
At the eastern end of the loop, the 60-metre boom arm of Stacker ST4, built in WA and delivered to site in January, has been positioned on its rail sled, ready for electrical fit-out.
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