OZ Minerals recruits ABB for safest hoist

OZ Minerals ABB hoist

OZ Minerals has awarded ABB a contract to design and supply its highest payload Koepe production hoist, associated infrastructure and safety systems at the Prominent Hill mine in South Australia.

The contract will help to ensure efficient processing performance and a long service life as part of an ongoing $400 million expansion at Prominent Hill.

Installing the Wira shaft will increase the annual underground mining rate, extend the mine life, reduce operating costs, lower emissions intensity, and reduce overall operational risk, according to OZ Minerals.

Once operational, the installation at Prominent Hill will have ABB Ability Safety Plus for hoists, a suite of mine hoist safety products that brings the highest level of personnel and equipment safety available to the mining industry.

The hoist has a capacity of 39,400kg and is the strongest drivetrain that ABB has ever installed in Australia. ABB specialists will also supervise installation and commissioning.

“The project is important for the country’s mining industry and metals security,” ABB Australia head of process industries Stuart Cowie said.

“The local supply chain and workforce also relies on the mine and at ABB we’re enabling it to continue for several more years with increased safety, higher production rates and lower emissions.”

ABB is known as a global leader in hoist systems with the last four mine hoists installed in Australia awarded to the global technology leader.

OZ Minerals’ gold, silver and copper mine began operations in 2009 as an open-pit mine, but it is now an underground mine producing 4.5 million tonnes per annum (mtpa), moving to between 4.5 and 5mtpa from 2022 via a trucking operation.

The hoisting shaft provides access to mineral resources outside the current trucking mine plan that would have been uneconomical via a trucking operation from around 2033.

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