EPCM Milestone has appointed Mipac to develop a Yokogawa DCS interface for the $360 million expansion of the Glencore-owned McArthur River zinc mine, located about 1000 kilometres south-west of Darwin in Australia’s Northern Territory.
McArthur River Mining Pty Ltd’s Phase 3 development of the mine will more than double zinc and lead production — raising production from 3 million tonnes to 5.5 million tonnes a year by 2014 — making it the largest zinc resource in the world and extending the life of the mine by nine years to 2036.
Milestone is an engineering and project management consultancy specialising in mineral processing and resource markets.
Mipac helped Milestone develop earlier stage expansion at the McArthur River mine, undertaking design, programming and commissioning of the Yokogawa DCS for the heavy medium plant in 2011.
Mipac has been re-engaged to develop the Phase 3 Yokogawa DCS interface using the latest Yokogawa VNET/IP system on plant areas including dewatering, grinding and regrinding, crushing, rougher flotation and the power station.
“We are best placed to do the design because of our experience upgrading DCS systems and network design for clients around the globe,” Mipac Managing Director Eddie DeRivera says.
“And, once again, we are demonstrating that we can collaborate effectively with companies in various locations; Milestone is based in Perth and MRM in the Northern Territory.
“This project is worth almost $1.5 million to Mipac and we hope to increase our scope of work as the site develops, as well as secure more contracts via Milestone Projects.”
Mipac Project Manager / Senior Systems Engineer Paul Allen is leading the team conducting design and development work at Mipac’s Brisbane offices.
“This project is challenging because of the tight design schedule and the requirement that the commissioning of the new plant equipment be carried out with minimum interference with the existing plant,” Paul says.
“Commissioning will occur on site later this year and by January 2014 interfacing to the new motor control centres will be networked with SEL smart relays, greatly expanding the motor information available to the operators and maintenance staff.”