Grosvenor coal mine is located in the Moranbah region of Queensland, Australia.
ABB’s Unigear ZS1 air-insulated switchgear is included with ultra-fast earthing switch, which detects an internal arc fault, and switches off the conductors within four milliseconds. Image courtesy of ABB.
The underground longwall will be completed in 2016. Image courtesy of ABB.

Grosvenor Coal Mine is located in the Moranbah region of Queensland, Australia. It is a greenfield metallurgical coal project being developed by Anglo American with an investment of $1.95bn.

The mine is estimated to produce seven million tonnes of run-of-mine coal per year. This coal will be processed to produce around five million tonnes of coking coal per year for export.

The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) of Grosvenor mine was approved in September 2011 and the project received approval from the Queensland government in 2012. In March 2015, the first coal was shipped from the mine.

Development of the mine is being carried out in two phases. The first phase consists of developing an underground longwall mine, which is scheduled to be commissioned in 2016. The second phase will involve the addition of a second longwall. Prefeasibility studies are being carried out on the second phase.

The coal project is expected to run for a period of 26 years and is estimated to generate approximately 1,000 jobs.

“There are estimated to be 139 million tonnes of metallurgical coking coal reserves at Grosvenor mine.”

Grosvenor mine geology and reserves

The Grosvenor project site is located to the south of Moranbah North Mine in Bowen Basin, Queensland. The region is rich in hard coking coal deposits, dated as 350-million-year-old Carboniferous rocks.

The coal seams in Bowen Basin resemble deposits of the Permean, Triassic, and Jurassic periods. They extend 600km-long and 250km-wide.

There are estimated to be 139 million tonnes of metallurgical coking coal reserves at Grosvenor Mine.

Coal mining and processing at Grosvenor, Queensland

The Grosvenor Mine is being developed using the longwall method. Mining will mainly occur at the Goonyella Middle coal seam.

A 980m-long overland conveyor has been built to transport the coal to the surface. Coal will then be transferred to the handling and preparation plant at Moranbah North Mine for processing, where it will be crushed, sized, and washed at the coal handling and preparation plant (CHPP). The coal will then be transported to North Moranbah’s rail load-out facility and further to Abbot Port Terminal for export.

“Construction works started in July 2012 and the first coal was shipped in March 2015.”

Construction of Queensland’s Grosvenor mine

Construction of the Grosvenor mining project involves approximately three million cubic metres of earthmoving, 800,000m³ of fill, 3,000t of steel and 13,000t of reinforced concrete.

Construction works started in July 2012 and the first developmental coal batch was shipped in 2015.

The conveyor tunnel boring was completed in 2014, while the people and equipment tunnel, which will move coal from the longwall underground to the stockpile and washing facilities above ground, was completed in February 2015.

Contractors involved with the Grosvenor Mine development

ABB was awarded the contract to design, engineer and install the integrated automation and electrification system for Grosvenor Coal Mine. The equipment to be delivered includes System 800xA automation, Unigear ZS1 switchgear and water-cooled multi-drive equipment also.

ABB will also supply a 66kV substation, power and distribution transformers, 15 modular pre-fabricated switch rooms, power quality systems, and multi-drive variable speed drives for the mine.

Hatch is the engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) contractor for the Grosvenor project. Under the contract, Hatch is responsible for the underground longwall mine development, upgrading of CHPP and its infrastructure, and surface mine infrastructure development.

McNab will design and build the administration, general facility and warehouse buildings at the project site under a subcontract worth $20m. Alluvium conducted the surface water impact assessment of the mine as part of the EIS.

Robbins supplied the tunnel boring machine for construction of the drifts.

Details of the automation technology at Grosvenor Mine

The advanced 800xA control system comprises of Industrial Defender’s Automation Systems Manager. The control system reduces operating costs as well as the risk of unplanned outages.

The 800xA control system also includes Feature Pack 4 technology. This technology reduces unplanned shutdowns, thereby improving asset utilisation and energy efficiency. The system integrates process control with electrical power systems.

Unigear ZS1 air-insulated switchgear technology is included with the Ultra Fast Earthing Switch (UFES), an advanced technique in proactive arc protection. UFES has the capability to switch off the conductors within four milliseconds of an internal arcing fault.

An advanced TVOC optical protective relay system helps in expanding the Unigear ZS1 switchgear, while the primary switching devices can be replaced easily.

The new eVD4 circuit-breaker integrates all switching, metrological, monitoring and communication functions into a single unit for modern-day distribution networks. The system is in compliance with the stipulations of the latest IEC-61850 standards.

NRI Energy Technology

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