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Next-generation mine to aid Europe’s energy transition ambitions

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ABB has announced a collaboration with Norge Mining, an Anglo-Norwegian mining company, to conduct a FEED (Front-End Engineering and Design) study for a future Norwegian upstream mine production which has the potential to supply minerals used in electric vehicles and solar panels needed for the clean energy revolution, and fertilizer demand, for at least 50 years.

The deposit contains large resources of phosphate, titanium, vanadium and subsequently phosphorus – four key EU-designated critical raw minerals that are essential for the clean energy transition and global food security.

Phosphate is processed and used to produce lithium-ion phosphate (LFP) batteries as well as fertilizer for the agriculture industry and is in high demand, with a recent US Geological Survey indicating phosphate reserves prior at 71 billion tons globally[1]. Norge Mining recently announced that it has discovered up to 70 billion tons of a mineralized igneous phosphate rock at the new mine site in southern Norway, known as the Bjerkreim-Sokndal Layered Intrusion site.

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“Norge Mining’s transformative partnership with ABB marks a new era for more sustainable, resource-efficient mining,” said Michael Wurmser, founder at Norge Mining. “Together, we’re aiming to power progress through next-generation mining. With Norge Mining’s portfolio of significant, critical and strategic raw minerals, it will make significant global impacts on enabling food production and supplying the European battery manufacturing industry.”

Alex Kaufmann, business line manager, mining for process industries Switzerland at ABB commented: “ABB is excited to begin this important project with Norge Mining, one that is anticipated to have a positive impact on European supply chains for the energy transition. Through our early involvement, as well as our expertise in design and solutions for mining, we will support Norge Mining to optimize costs both during the construction phase as well as during the operation of the mine. Furthermore, our eMine™ approach for electrification and automation, which makes mines all-electric and includes integrated solutions that help eliminate CO2 emissions, will help to increase the mine’s efficiency and ensure energy-efficient and seamlessly integrated systems across the entire plant.”

ABB and Norge Mining aim to explore the entire electrification of future mining and downstream operations including control system options to provide a complete overview of the mine and integrate advanced operations. The ABB study will address electrification, automation and digitalization to ensure maximum sustainability, cost-efficiency and productivity at the mine from the outset and for the long term. ABB’s recommendations will also focus on low energy consumption within mine operations as well as optimizing CAPEX and lowering OPEX with solutions for lower maintenance and higher efficiency.

ABB Business Line Mining draws on over 130 years of experience in the mining industry and is a pioneer in the integration of electrification, automation and digitalization in mining, claims the company.

 

Source:  steel times international

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