OZ Minerals breathes life into Prominent Hill expansion

OZ Minerals

Ventilation system at Prominent Hill (2020). Image: Zitron Australia.

OZ Minerals has selected long-time partner Zitrón Australia to design and manufacture a new primary underground ventilation system for the Prominent Hill gold mine in South Australia.

The companies have worked together since 2014 and the new project will see this relationship extended until at least the end of 2022.

Zitrón Australia managing director Javier Fernandez Lopez said the deal was a credit to his team.

“Congratulations to all the Zitrón Australia team members who have contributed to securing this contract, to our suppliers and partners for their contribution and to our customer, OZ Minerals, for the trust it has shown in us,” Lopez said.

The scope of works includes two high-pressure axial fans with a 3.8 metre impeller and installed motor power of 3400 kilowatts (kw).

This will bring the total installed power of primary fans by Zitrón at Prominent Hill to 8.6 megawatts.

“The contract will see Zitrón carry out a complete fan performance test in the company’s AMCA-accredited test bench, the largest in the world for axial fan testing,” Lopez said.

“All the fan performance parameters will be tested (flow, pressure, efficiency, vibrations, temperature…) when the fan is run at its nominal speed and projected working conditions, in line with the resistance levels nominated in the project specification.”

Zitron Australia is part of the larger namesake Spanish group which is a leader in ventilation solutions for underground environments.

In August, OZ Minerals was approved to construct a new hoisting shaft at Prominent Hill, adding four years to the mine’s life for a cost of $600 million.

The Wira shaft will allow the mine to operate until 2036 at around six million tonnes per annum.

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