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QCC Resources Teams up with Glencore for Ravensworth North Project

Headquartered in one of the largest coal regions on earth, QCC Resources (QCC) is the essence of strategic consulting for coal processing.The Australian...

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|Dec 12|magazine11 min read

Headquartered in one of the largest coal regions on earth, QCC Resources (QCC) is the essence of strategic consulting for coal processing.

The Australian-based company specializes in design, engineering, operations and optimization of coal preparation plants throughout Australia, China, New Zealand, Indonesia, South Africa, Canada and Russia.

“QCC Resources was born in 1987 at a time when consultants to the coal industry were a new thing,” says Andrew Swanson, Executive General Manager Strategic Consulting and Business Development.

“Over time we’ve grown as the use of consultants, engineers and contractors has continued to expand.”

In 2004, the company was purchased by Downer EDI Limited, becoming part of the company’s mining division. QCC, working with Downer Infrastructure, has become an established provider of Coal Handling and Preparation Plant (CHPP) design and construction services to the coal industry internationally.

The company recently completed one of the largest projects of its kind, working in unison with Glencore to deliver the design, procurement, construction and commissioning of the Ravensworth North Coal Handling and Preparation Plant (CHPP) in Hunter Valley, Australia.

Ravensworth North coal project

Known as the Ravensworth North coal project, the Downer/QCC portion of the project involved not only the establishment of CHPP facilities, but also the site wide electrical work, which required the relocation of a 330kV Transgrid transmission line requiring 48 new towers plus construction of a new 66/11kV substation, relocation of a 66kV Ausgrid transmission line and various overhead and underground HV works including all 11kV site wide reticulation.

To complete the project as efficiently as possible, Downer/QCC entered into an alliance contract partnership with Xstrata Coal, now incorporated into Glencore.

“We set up an alliance partnership between Downer/QCC and Xstrata Coal to form a good working relationship that could effectively deliver all the key aspects of the project in a timely manner,” says Swanson.

“Our teams were onsite for two and a half years delivering two million site hours with over 650 people onsite at the peak of construction. Importantly no lost time injuries were incurred and the project achieved a total recordable injury frequency rate (TRIFR) of 5.7.”

QCC had been working with Glencore in alliance projects since 2005, including CHPP work at Mt Owen, Liddell and Mangoola, and started work on Ravensworth North back in 2009 when QCC began assisting in the project for Xstrata Coal.

“We started off in 2009 doing a concept study for Xstrata, that progressed into a pre-feasibility study, followed by feasibility study and then set the design and scope for the Ravensworth North project,” says Swanson.

One of the biggest challenges in delivering the Ravensworth project was that it had to be constructed within an existing operational facility and was therefore governed by a wide range of constraints, incorporated within a large geographical area.

The project provided a 3000 t/h raw coal delivery system, two new 900 t/h processing modules, rejects handling and product stockpiling/reclaiming facilities. According to Swanson, an interesting fact is that the project required 14 new conveyors to be designed and constructed.

“The total length of the new conveyor network was over 9 kilometers. In addition, upgrades were required for existing conveyors which covered just under 5 kilometers, bringing the total length of the entire conveyor network to an incredible 13.9 kilometers.”

A key factor in overcoming the challenges was the deployment of QCC Resources team members from the recently successfully completed Mangoola project. The team brought with them high levels of technical expertise and valuable onsite experience. In addition, they were assisted by teams from Downer Infrastructure East who delivered all of the electrical work and some of the SMP work.

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