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Robe River Iron Associates, is a joint venture mining company that is majority owned by Rio Tinto along with Mitsui, Nippon Steel and Sumitomo Metal Industries. It is the fourth largest iron ore seaborne trader in the world.

Mesa J Robe River Mine has now Ceased Production
The Robe River Iron Associates formerly owned and operated the Robe
River iron ore mine, or Mesa J Mine, at Pannawonica, in the Pilbara Region of Western Australia but this mine has now ceased operation and has been replaced by two open pit mines, the Mesa A and the West Angelas Mines.

Mines at Robe River Still in Operation are the West Angelas andMesa A Mines
The two mines operated by Robe River Iron Associates in the Robe Valley 100 kilometres west of Newman, produce Robe River fines and lump iron ore for the export market. The West Angelas Mine mine, that commenced operation in 2002, also produces Marra Mamba iron ore that significantly enhances the Rio Tinto Pilbara Blend. The mines are located near the small town of Pannawonica.

Robe River Mesa J Mine Produced 35 Million Tonnes a Year at its Height
The original Robe River mine, or Mesa J Mine, commenced operation in 1994 and had a production capacity of seven million tonnes of iron ore a year. The ore was processed on site before being transported to Cape Lambert by the Hamersley and Robe River Railway. At the height of its production the Robe River Mine produced 35 million tonnes of iron ore a year.

Robe River Valley is in the Iron Ore Rich Hamersley Range
The Robe River mines are situated in the Hamersley Range, an area that rich in iron ore mineralisation it is regarded as having 80 percent of all known Australian iron ore reserves. Which makes it one of the worlds premier iron ore provinces. The Robe River mines are operated on a fly-in- fly-out basis with workers living in camp accommodation during their rostered on shifts.

Rio Tinto began mining for iron ore in the Pilbara in 1966 with mining commencing at the Mesa A open pit in 2010 with annual production capacity of iron ore standing at 25 million tonnes. The life of the Mesa A mine has been estimated as being 11 years.

Robe River Railway is Integral to Mines Success
A major part of the success of the Robe River mines is the Robe River Railway. This railway was initially built by Cliffs Robe River Iron Associates to link the Pannawonica Mine with a Pelletising Plant at Cape Lambert. It was authorised to be built in July 1970 with track laying beginning in 1972. The first test train travelled from Cape Lambert to the Pannawonica Mine on July 6 1972, with the first trainload of iron ore being transported from the mine to the port on August 8, 1972. This train pulled 75 wagons full of iron ore that were pulled by two locomotives.

The major shareholder in the Hamersley and Robe River Railway is the Rio Tinto Group. It is operated by Rio Tinto's subsidiary, Pilbara Iron and is the largest privately owned heavy freight railway network in Australia, with a length of track of over 1,300 kilometres.

Rio Tinto

Rio Tinto is a major producer of iron ore, coal, bauxite, alumina, aluminium, uranium, copper, gold, diamonds, salt and energy across the globe. Businesses include open pit and underground mines, refineries, smelters, mills and power stations. Also a number of research facilities more


Rio Tinto
152-158 St George s Terrace
Perth, WA 6000



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Riggers Dido

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