ABB to automate Blötberget iron ore mine in Sweden

The old headframe at the Blötberget iron mine in Sweden where ABB is automating ahead of reopening. Credit: Nordic Iron Ore.

ABB has been appointed by Nordic Iron Ore to scope process control and management systems for a future-proof and fully-digitalized mining operation at the Blötberget iron ore mine

Global technology company ABB has provided mine design consultancy and recommended scope of supply for the opening of the former Blötberget mine near Ludvika in the Dalarna region of Sweden. The mine, which has been closed since 1979, is being redeveloped by mining company Nordic Iron Ore and is advancing towards construction.

ABB’s recommendation addresses automation, digitalization and electrification for long-term, safe, sustainable and efficient mining operations at the site. The technology provider analyzed a detailed feasibility study by Nordic Iron Ore and has made a significant advancement on the definitions and scope of supply of the automation and electrification aspects of the mine.

In planning mine design, ABB draws on its comprehensive ABB Ability MineOptimize portfolio of electrification and automation solutions, engineering, digital applications and collaborative services. ABB Ability MineOptimize integrates individual mining solutions into a secure and structured plant-wide system to optimize all stages in the lifecycle – from design and build to operation and service – of any open pit or underground mine and minerals processing plant.

ABB automation and digital solutions to meet the challenges in designing and developing a new mine include ABB Ability System 800xA distributed control system (DCS) and cloud-based solution ABB Ability Genix dashboard, which supports digitalized ways of working with reports and increases transparency. ABB Ability operations management system, which maximizes coordination between weekly production plans and dynamic situations in the mine to improve efficiency, increase productivity and maximize profitability, is another example. ABB also looked at electrical infrastructure requirements for Blötberget, including surface and underground containers, switchgears and transformers.

The Blötberget iron ore mine is expected to be operational in 2024. Iron ore was mined until 1979 when it was closed due to low prices.

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