thyssenkrupp gets a BigLift to Baffin Island

BREMERHAVEN, Germany: September 02, 2019. Dutch heavy lift operator BigLift has helped thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions ship a pre-assembled 5,500-ton iron ore materials handling system to Baffin Island, Canada,

Baffinland Iron Ore Mines Corporation’s Mary River mine is one of the world’s richest iron ore deposits and aims to triple its material handling capacity to 12 million tons a year.

However the port on Baffin Island, with Spring arriving in mid-July and Winter returning in September, is only free of ice and accessible to shipping between the end of July and the beginning of October – making deliveries “challenging” according to the company.

On this visit, Big Lift’s 20,000 DWT vessel Barentsz  arrived in August to unload a crusher building 23.5 metres wide, 33 metres high and weighing 1,470 tons; and a screen building 30 metres wide, 34 metres high and weighing almost 1,800 tons. Two more ships are scheduled to deliver conveyors during the current shipping season with the remaining units arriving in 2020.

Christof Brewka, head of Materials Handling at thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions commented: “Ambitious projects like this require a deep understanding of local conditions, close collaboration with the client and efficient global project management. One of our strengths is that we can bring together our experts at different locations around the world. Teams from Germany, Canada and the USA have pooled their know-how to develop the best solution for Baffinland.”

Baffin Island, 600 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle, is the fifth largest island in the world with a surface area of over 500,000 square kilometres and a population of under 12,000.

The Mary River Mine, in the Canadian Nunavut territory, is one of the northernmost mines in the world and has been producing high-quality iron ore since 2015. The ore is currently moved 100 kilometres by road from the mine to Milne Inlet port, on the northern coast of Baffin Island. As part of the overall project it will now be moved by rail.