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The Eagle Downs underground coal mine, that is being developed 20 kilometres from Moranbah in the coal rich Bowen Basin of Queensland, is being designed to produce eight million tonnes of hard coking coal annually.

WDS win Contract to Develop Eagle Downs Underground Coal Mining Project

In December 2013 mining contractor WDS Limited was awarded a two year contract to construct two, two kilometres long drifts into the coal seam from the surface. One of the drifts will be used to provide access for the mine workforce and the other will contain a permanent conveyor to the Harrow Creek upper coal seam. The contract also requires WDS Limited to establish permanent services for the mine's ongoing development. The drifts being constructed will also be used in the future to provide access to other coal seams identified in the mines reserve data base.

Eagle Downs Mine to Have two Drifts Constructed

The construction of the two drifts at the Eagle Downs underground coal project will be developed by WDS Limited at a grade of 1:7 with the use of two of its 300 kilowatt roadheaders. The roadheaders will be engineered for this particular purpose in order to comply with the requirements of the project. This includes having shotcrete tunnel lining and on board roof bolting capabilities. Mobilisation will begin in the first half of 2014 and will be completed by the end of 2015.

Eagle Downs Project Owned by Bowen Central Coal Joint Venture

The Eagle Downs coal mining project is owned by Bowen Central Coal Joint Venture (BCCJV) which itself comprises a partnership between Bowen Central Coal Pty Ltd (50 percent) and Aquila Coal Pty Ltd (50 percent). Bowen Central Coal is a wholly owned subsidiary of Vale Australia Holdings and Aquila Coal a wholly owned subsidiary of Aquila Resources Limited. Eagle Downs Coal Management Pty Ltd is the management company of BCCJV.

Eagle Downs to Use Longwall Method of Mining

Eagle Downs Coal was granted its coal mining lease in August 2011 when both Vale and Acquila approved the development of the new mine that will use the multi-seam longwall method of underground coal mining of hard coking coal.

Eagle Downs to Mine Three Major Coal Seams

The coal seams to be mined at the Eagle Downs mine have been identified as; Harrow Creek Lower, Harrow Creek Upper and the Dysart seams. These three coal seams are all part of the Moranbah coal measures. The single conventional Longwall extraction method of mining will be used to extract coal from the Harrow Creek Upper coal seam and Longwall Top Coal Caving is planned to be used in the Dysart and Harrow Creek Lower seams.

Mining at Eagle Downs to Start with the Harrow Creek Upper Seam

It is planned to schedule the Eagle Downs mine to begin mining of the Harrow Creek Upper seam first. This is to be followed with the mining of the Harrow Creek Lower seam. The Dysart seam will be the last to be mined. The Harrow Creek Upper seam will be intersected by the drift at a depth of 270 metres from the surface. The drift will initially have two ventilation shafts installed, one of the shafts will be used for air intake and a larger shaft for exhaust ventilation.

The Eagle Downs Coal Handling and Preparation Plant (CHPP) will be designed to handle up to 1,200 tonnes an hour of run-of-mine (ROM) coal. The project, once developed will have a life of mine of more than 45 years.

Vale Australia

Vale is a natural resource company with Head Quarters in Brazil and more than 139,000 employees and contractors. With operations in 37 countries Vale are a leader in iron ore, nickel, copper and coal productions. In Australia Vale employs around 1,100 people and have projects in QLD and NSW, more


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