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The Ulan Coal Mines Limited (UCML) in the Western Coalfields of NSW belongs to Xstrata Coal NSW, a fully owned subsidiary of GlencoreXstrata. Ulan are currently in the process of re-establishing and extending its open cut mining operation as well as the continued operation of its two underground mines, the new Ulan West mine and the more established Ulan No 3 mine.

Ulan Mine 21 Years in the Making
The exploitation of the Ulan coal seam has been contemplated for the last 21 years as an open cut and long wall underground operation. The operation, known as the Ulan Mine Complex, includes the land holdings under the mining lease, land management as well as all underground and open cut mining operations taking place at the site.

Ulan Open cut Mine to Have a Life of no More Than 11 Years
Open cut mining at the Ulan Complex will only be undertaken from seven to 11 years after production commences. Underground mining at the site will continue for the life of the mines. The open cut will incorporate a mix of dragline and truck/loader methods of mining whereas the underground operations are incorporating continuous mining and long wall retreat technology. This method of mining coal underground allows the mining of the highest quality of coal as it only extracts the bottom three metres of the Ulan coal seam. Primary coal extraction, or development mining, is carried out with the use of a continuous miner and shuttle car process to develop long-wall panels. Secondary coal mining of the Ulan seam uses long-wall methods operating a width of around 400 metres. The first such panel was mined in 2005. this made it the first of its kind to be undertaken in any mine operating in the Southern Hemisphere.

Quality Ulan Coal Goes Unwashed
The removal of the bottom three metres of the coal seam at the Ulan Mine lessens the need for coal washing whereas 30 percent of coal taken to the surface requires washing before it becomes export quality coal. Coal is taken to the surface of the mine via conveyor where it is stockpiled. The coal not requiring washing is immediately crushed and placed in finished product stockpiles to await rail loading that takes it off site. Ash coal it trucked to the coal washing plant from where it is picked up by a reclaimer and taken to the CHPP (coal handling preparation plant).

Ulan CHPP is State of Art
The Ulan coal handling and preparation plant has a 1,800 tonnes an hour raw coal receival capacity that allows for raw coal stockpiling, or re- claiming from the stockpile, by means of a bucket wheel reclaimer. A 1,000 tonne surge bin distributes coal feed to a 1,200 tonnes an hour between two modules. The CHPP consists of dense medium baths, dense medium cyclones and water washing cyclones that separate rejects from the quality coal product to satisfy both export and domestic requirements. Course rejects are taken from the receival bin by truck and returned to the mining cycle. Tailings are then thickened and pumped into a reject emplacement dam. The product coal is either railed to the Port of Newcastle coal terminal for export or railed to the domestic market.

The Ulan coal mining complex's need to increase its ROM coal production has seen it expand to a 20 million tonnes a year mining operation. This has required the upgrading of the CHPP to accommodate three modules. The third module increased the amount of coal washing as did the modifications made to the two existing modules. The third module is to be located on the northern side of the CHPP.

Note- GlencoreXstrata was formed following a merger of Glencore International and Xstrata, the merger was completed in May 2013. But a decision was made by the Company's shareholders during the annual general meeting and the announcement was made in May 2014 that Glencore will drop Xstrata and be simply known as Glencore.


Glencore dates back to 1974 as Marc Rich & Co, focused on minerals, metals and crude oil. In the 1980's Glencore added coal to their portfolio. Glencore is one of the worlds largest natural resource companies with more than 90 offices in over 50 countries, over 150 mining and metallurgical more


Level 38, 1 Macquarie Place
Sydney, NSW 2000



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