Vale S.A. has announced that tests are under way at the treatment plant of their Eastern Hills iron ore project to evaluate equipment performance. Completion is pending Q3 2014; load testing will begin in Q1. Located in Curionópolis, in Brazil’s northeastern state of Pará, Eastern Hills will increase fine and lump iron ore production at the Carajás mining complex by 6 million metric tons per year (mt/y).

Vale officials note that while the figure may seem small compared with other projects, Eastern Hills contains an unusually high-grade of iron ore used to constitute the blend produced in the region.