Solving frozen pellet problems

Solving frozen pellet problems

January 16, 2013

Trains transporting iron ore to Narvik operate 365 days a year. The interim storage of the iron ore outdoors during winter can lead to logistical challenges.

LKAB stores some of the iron ore outdoors on an interim basis at plants in Kiruna and Svappavaara. The iron ore is exposed to the wind and weather, freezes during the winter and reaches a temperature of below minus 25 °C.

Large frozen pellet clumps can form, while whole layers of frozen pellet mass can occur.

Frozen pellets can create major problems in the logistics line from Kiruna to Narvik, which broadly speaking comprises the following steps: loading of pellets onto railway carriages, railway transport to Narvik, unloading at LKAB's silo facility discharge from the silo and finally loading onto the cargo ship.

Consequently, this is an area that Norut will take a closer look at. The work at the research institute will result in written instructions for the handling of frozen iron ore pellets so LKAB avoids unnecessary stoppages and lost income.