As Independent Verifier and Technical Advisor for the rail connection and rail construction of the Ravensworth North Project and associated rail infrastructure, Lycopodium were contracted to verify the design and construction of the rail interfaces to the Hunter Valley Heavy Haul Freight Network, Australia.
The objective of the Ravensworth North Project was to develop a new open-cut coal mine in the Hunter Valley. The new mine was designed to produce 15 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) run-of-mine (ROM) coal.
The project comprised a number of open-cut pits of varying area and depth. The coal is crushed, processed and blended on-site before being transported by rail on the Australian Rail Track Corporation’s (ARTC) Hunter Valley rail network to the Port of Newcastle for export.
The Ravensworth Coal Terminal is located approximately 20km to the north west of Singleton. Rail access to Ravensworth Coal Terminal is via Newdell Junction.
The existing facility at Ravensworth previously operated with a single uni-directional arrival road (Down Ravensworth Branch) and a shared bi-directional departure road (Up and Down Branch). These tracks provided restricted access for arrival and departure trains for Newdell, Liddell and Hunter Valley Operations as well as departing Ravensworth trains. The construction of an additional arrival track in addition to construction of a new Ravensworth Junction off the ARTC mainline significantly improves reliability and capacity to and from the Xstrata Mine.
Engaging Lycopodium to act as Xstrata’s independent verifier for the project interface with the ARTC network ensured that the rail design and construction was undertaken in accordance with appropriate standards and in particular the ARTC Heavy Haul Guidelines.
“The Hunter Valley network is a complex high capacity rail system and our complete understanding of Heavy Haul rail operations, infrastructure and maintenance is our core strength”