A big machine for big requirements

Australia’s top mining companies are driven by the ambition to become the biggest and best at what they do. With the help of thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions, a leading iron ore miner will have two of the biggest crushers in the country.

In April 2020, thyssenkrupp was awarded two consecutive contracts from the Fortescue Metals Group and Formosa Steel IB joint venture to provide two of the world’s largest crushers for their highly-prospective Iron Bridge magnetite project in Western Australia.

With completion scheduled for 2022, an expected 22 million tonnes of high-grade 67 per cent iron magnetite concentrate product is set to be produced at the Iron Bridge project each year.

Twin KB 63-130 type gyratory crushers will be installed at the project, which is south of Port Hedland in the Pilbara region.

The gyratory crushers will be paramount to the site’s massive scale of operations with a colossal maximum throughput capacity of 14,400 tonnes per hour.

Weighing in at just shy of half a tonne, the KB 63-130 features a 1600-millimetre feed opening.

Ahead of their deployment at Iron Bridge, thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions Australia national sales manager – strategic accounts, Luke Bennett explains why the KB 63-130 gyratory crushers are a huge leap forward for Australia’s resources industry.

“The KB 63-130 machine is still new to the world of primary crushing and these machines will show Australian clients the performance and throughput they can gain from such a machine,” Bennett tells Australian Mining.

According to Bennett, there are “advantages galore” for the crusher compared with its closest competitors.

“The crusher design has the highest installed power which means it will continue to perform through hard ore,” Bennett says.

The design has the highest throughput available in the market for gyratory crushers. Other benefits include a design that resembles thyssenkrupp’s smaller machines.

“Such design has been a result of the continuous improvements of our primary semi-mobile crushing plants, which are now capable to exchange the smaller KB 63-89 and KB 63-130 one by one,” Bennett explains.

“This means clients save a lot of money on infrastructure works for fixed and semi-mobile installations.

“Major items are serviceable through the top of the machine so work under the crusher is minimal.”

Like all of thyssenkrupp’s crushers, reliability is a key factor of their designs, with the KB 63-130 being no different.

“In all machines reliability is essential, as this determines the availability of the machine for production,” Bennett says.

“thyssenkrupp gyratory crushers are well known globally for being reliable and long lasting under tough conditions.

“The KB 63-130 leads the way for thyssenkrupp with its top serviceability – this means the majority of components can be removed from the top of the machine, which is a safer practice and typically clients will have the lifting capacity available for servicing through the top, reducing additional requirements for servicing underneath the machine.”

Fortescue will also have the option to automate the crushers through thyssenkrupp’s Gyromatic control system.

“thyssenkrupp crushers come with our proprietary control system — the Gyromatic — which controls the machine and interlocks for machine protection and safe operation,” Bennett says.

“The Gyromatic enables customers to control the machine in place or remotely. If requested such a set-up also allows thyssenkrupp to provide teleservice support.”

The Australian debut of the KB 63-130 will help bring in more clients across the country, according to Bennett.

“The KB 63-130 has in fact made one of our machines redundant – the 63-114,” Bennett says.

“This machine was very heavy, very tall and only achieved a marginal gain in performance from its more common counterpart, the 63-89. Now clients can take a large step in performance and look towards the future of high capacity plants.”

This article appears in the June issue of Australian Mining.

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