ABB to automate, electrify Nordic Iron Ore's Blötberget

Nordic Iron Ore has chosen engineering technology firm ABB to “future-proof” its Blötberget iron ore project in Sweden through advanced process control and management systems.
ABB to automate, electrify Nordic Iron Ore's Blötberget ABB to automate, electrify Nordic Iron Ore's Blötberget ABB to automate, electrify Nordic Iron Ore's Blötberget ABB to automate, electrify Nordic Iron Ore's Blötberget ABB to automate, electrify Nordic Iron Ore's Blötberget

Nordic Iron Ore said that ABB has analysed a Detailed Feasibility Study by Nordic Iron Ore and made "significant advancement" on the definitions and scope of supply of the automation and electrification aspects of the mine.

ABB will play a part in the project from its mine design stage through to  recommended scope of supply. It has also looked at electrical infrastructure requirements for the Blötberget mine, including surface and underground containers, switchgears and transformers.

"Mining and the support industries are a significant part of the Swedish economy, with some of the most advanced and efficient mining operations anywhere in the world," said Lennart Eliasson, Managing Director of Nordic Iron Ore. "There are many challenges when opening a new mine. We want to draw on the strong technology knowledge that exists in Sweden to open a mine with low environmental impact and footprint and that is also competitive and safe. The early involvement from ABB, which has a track record of working with innovative mines in Sweden, ensures that the construction, design and planning for the development of the mine can take a significant step forward and with improved costs and benefits forecast accuracy."

"ABB can provide assistance at an early stage in mine development for electrification and automation and routinely collaborates with mining companies from initial feasibility studies through to full deployment," said Björn Jonsson, Hub Manager, Process Industries, ABB. "Swedish mines are already benefiting from ABB solutions, using ABB Ability System 800xA distributed control system and the integrated ABB Ability Ventilation Optimizer."

Nordic Iron Ore last November published an optimisation of a previously presented feasibility study that increased the Blötberget Project's net present value by circa 50% to US$172 million. The Blötberget field consists mainly of three mineralised bodies. Calculated from west to east, these are the Kalvgruvan (apatite-rich magnetite mineralisation), the Hugget- Flygruvan (apatite rich magnetite-hematite mineralisation) and the Sandellmalmen (apatite rich magnetite mineralisation)

The mineral resources in Blötberget down to the 800-meter levelling are estimated at 45,4 million tonnes of 41,7 percent iron, which are classified as measured, and 9,6 million tonnes at 36,2 percent iron classified indicated.

In June, Nordic Iron Ore and equipment maker Epiroc Sweden have agreed to partner on development of the former's historic Blötberget project in central Sweden.

Most of the mining in the Blötberget mine before its closing in 1979 was above the 240 m level. Nordic Iron Ore plans to restart mining operations at 420 m level as the new main level.