Olympic Dam 1000t Bin Demolition Works

Project Overview

Located 560km north of Adelaide, Olympic Dam is one of the world’s most significant deposits of copper, gold, silver and uranium. The mine comprises both underground and surface operations and operates a fully integrated processing facility from ore to metal.

The underground mine is made up of more than 450km of underground roads and tunnels. Ore mined underground is hauled by an automated train system to crushing, storage and ore hoisting facilities.

Scope of Work

The existing 1000t bin located at the mine end of the Olympic Dam site, adjacent to a 500t bin, had reached the end of its serviceable life and the bin shell was starting to lose its shell integrity, posing a risk to personnel working in and around the bin.

McMahon Services were engaged to undertake the works which required the demolition of the 1000t ore bin, 500t bin, the Whenan Shaft conveyor frame work over the haul road, and all footings associated with the bins and conveyor. Works were completed during a shutdown period and therefore required a 24-hour working schedule until completed.

Mechanical demolition works were achieved utilising a PC1250 Komatsu excavator with grab, hammer and shear attachments, PC850 Komatsu excavator with a long reach shear attachment, a PC450 Komatsu excavator with grab, shear and pulveriser attachments, and a semi tipper.

Pre-work ahead of the shutdown included the removal of the Whenan Shaft Conveyor, which allowed for the diversion of the haul road adjacent to the 1000t bin. The demolition of the 1000t bin, 500t bin and footings occurred during the shutdown and all material was removed to a laydown area outside the demolition zone. This allowed for the construction of the 1000t bin by others to continue. The material in the laydown area comprising of steel and concrete was then processed, with the scrap steel being pressure washed, radiation checked and removed from Olympic Dam site to an Adelaide-based scrap dealer. Concrete was pulverised to below 150mm in size and transported to Olympic Dam’s onsite resource recovery centre.

Workforce peaked at 19 completing 5500 work hours.

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