CPS Conveyors reported it designed, engineered and fabricated the all-composite idlers for two roughly 26-km conveyors at BHP’s South Flank in the Pilbara.

One conveyor runs almost straight north from PC1. The other forms a long curve from PC2 to the transfer station located 2 km south of the coarse ore stockpile.

The conveyors are made from around 24,000 separate conveyor frames, assembled into modules. They are comprised of roughly 14,000 0.5-mm high-tolerance carry idler frames, and around 72,000 of CPS’s Yeloroll HD composite rollers.

Unique to this particular project is the 220-mm diameter composite center roll, specifically designed for BHP to further reduce power draw along the conveyor through optimized geometry and material selection, CPS reported.

Design work started in 2017. Fabrication started in July 2019.

CPS said the idlers were completed on time, in April 2020, and within budget. “We believe this is one of the most advanced, reliable and cost-efficient overland conveyors in the world,” Matt Einhorn, chief financial officer, CPS, said.

The project was “the single-largest project undertaken by our business,” he said. It “required CPS production facilities to run over two shifts for almost 10 months and employ more than 50 additional local staff.”