The long awaited Roy Hill project in the Pilbara region of Western Australia is finally coming to fruition. Representing the next era in iron ore mining, the $10 billion project is expected to unlock a treasure trove of iron ore—55 million tons per year—through an integrated mine, rail and port operation, while providing significant economic and social benefits in the process. The Roy Hill operation is scheduled to load its first shipment of iron ore for export later this year.
The inner workings
The goal for Roy Hill is to develop a vertically integrated pit-to-port business strategy utilizing a mine, rail and port system to efficiently mine, transport and export iron ore.
Roy Hill’s independently owned and operated railway is a 344km standard gauge, single line, heavy haul railway built to transport 55 million tons of iron ore from the Roy Hill Mine to the dedicated Port stockyard facility, in the Boodarie Industrial Estate south of Port Hedland.
“Five ore trains per day will operate from the Roy Hill Mine, each consisting of two diesel electric locomotives hauling 232 ore cars with a total payload of 31,132 tons of ore,” said Roy Hill CEO, Barry Fitzgerald.
“Due to the undulating nature of the terrain to the north of the mine, for the first 30 kilometres of the journey to Port Hedland, each train will initially be assisted by rear located, manned banker locomotives.”
The train system will include a wide array of state-of-the-art technology, including a communications-based automatic train protection system that will provide improved safety for all track related activities and increased operational efficiencies.
“The adoption of this full vehicle tracking communication based technology is the first of its kind to be used in Australia and will set new benchmarks for iron ore railways in the Pilbara,” said Fitzgerald.
After transportation via rail, Roy Hill will then export shipments through its world-class iron ore port facility at Port Hedland. The facility is capable of receiving, stockpiling, screening and exporting 55 million tons of iron ore, including the capacity to store more than 2.3 million tons.
The company will be controlling all of this through its Remote Operational Centre (ROC) in Perth.
“The amalgamation of these business functions into a truly vertically integrated business provides a coordinated and integrated approach to the planning, operation and overall management of our corporate, mining, processing, rail and port operations,” said Fitzgerald.
“The co-location of the corporate headquarters and ROC provides us with the ability to seamlessly integrate the operations, marketing and corporate services functions from end to end.”
The ROC will consist of a demand chain team that is responsible for the operational planning, scheduling and execution of production, maintenance and supply activities across all areas of operations...Click here to read the full story on Business Review Australia!