NRW Holdings company Primero Group recently began a four year contract with Atlas Iron Pty Ltd. which includes design, supply, construction, commissioning, operation and maintenance of crushing and screening facilities to produce lump and fine iron ore products for Atlas’ Miralga Creek operation in Western Australia, at processing rates of up to 1,000 tph.
The PGX-1000 plant innovations deployed were jointly developed with sister company RCR Mining Technologies, also part of NRW Holdings, and key equipment supplier Weir Minerals through “effective collaboration and teamwork.” Primero said the successful, safe, on-time ramp-up of the plant and ongoing client satisfaction “is testament to the hard work of all the partners’ teams to develop, successfully deploy, and operate this great facility.”
Weir Minerals added it was proud to have partnered with Primero Group and RCR Mining Technologies on the project. “Our team delivered tailor made crushing equipment including a TF6424 Grizzly Feeder, CT4254 Jaw Crusher and a TP450 Cone Crusher. The close collaboration ensured we were able to successfully deliver a crushing solution that was on budget and ahead of schedule.”
RCR Mining Technologies added, “We are proud to have partnered with Primero Group and Weir Minerals on the PGX1000 – Atlas Iron Miralga Creek Project. We designed, manufactured, and assembled the jaw crushing module, screening module and five conveyors. Our team was able to optimise the original PGX design to make it easier to manufacture at a lower cost and provide a more robust solution.”
Graham Arvidson, former GM operations & maintenance, Primero Group commented in a project overview video: “Miralga Creek has our PGX1000 Mark II design – what that means is that we have deployed a very similar plant in the past and we’ve had this wonderful opportunity to just grab all the teams from RCR and Weir Minerals and understand how we manufacture this thing smarter, how do make it operate better, how do we maintain it better.”
Brendan Dorricott, executive general manager, RCR Mining Technologies echoed this, saying, “We were able to optimise the original PGX design to make it easier to manufacture, lower cost, but also more robust for the solution for Atlas.” He added, “We can put them in on steel so you need less cost to actually install them; you don’t need to put a lot of concrete in. And when they’re done in that duty you can move them to next one very quickly and very easily, spending less money early on and less money over the lifecycle of the deposit.”
Fred Purches, director of comminution, Weir Minerals, also talked about the partnering element of the project. “The relationship between RCR, Primero and Weir Minerals is really unique and dynamic…there’s a constant exchange of information and feeding of ideas, and it really makes us better every single day……Primero’s Design, Construct, Operate model means that they’ve got skin in the game at every level, so its vital that every single factor and phase of the project works well. Weir Minerals looked at the reliability of the equipment, what sort of maintenance processes that Primero were going to implement on site and there were a number of unique design solutions on the project.”
Taryn Powell, project manager, RCR Mining Technologies added, “The assembly of the PGX plant at RCR took around eight weeks for the modules and five of the conveyors. That was from start to finish, with the grid mesh handrailing, installing all of the Weir Minerals equipment and then putting it onto trucks for delivery to Miralga Creek.”
Michael Lapidoth, Weir Minerals technical services manager said, “Modular plants have a big advantage over fixed sites – the capital cost of the construction of the plants is a lot less……we supplied a vibrating grizzly feeder, a jaw crusher and a cone crusher. These machines had to be fully assembled at RCR before they left for Miralga Creek, which was unusual but we rose to the challenge.”
Shane O’Keefe, manager operations and maintenance – Primero Group said, “We tested pretty much the entire plant before it went to site – everything from pre-commissioning to testing conveyors, crushing equipment, feeding. The Miralga Creek project has been such a success because of the relationships between all the people – Atlas, Primero, RCR, Weir Minerals – it has all come together because of those efforts.”
Stacey Brown, general manager of projects at the customer Atlas Iron summed up the project as follows: “The greatest strength of Primero is that they’re able to pull together a really good team of people to deliver in a short amount of time. Atlas is incredibly happy with the end result– the project was a huge success, it was delivered safely, on budget and on time slightly ahead of schedule.”
Weir Minerals CT4254 Jaw Crusher.