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Overview of operations

Our iron ore operations include three hematite mining hubs in the Pilbara and our Iron Bridge magnetite mine. Our three hubs are connected by 760 kilometres of rail to Herb Elliott Port and the Judith Street Harbour towage infrastructure in Port Hedland. 


Chichester Hub

Our Chichester Hub in the Chichester Ranges includes the Cloudbreak and Christmas Creek mines and has an annual production capacity of approximately 100 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) from three ore processing facilities (OPFs).

Consistent and sustained performance delivered from the OPFs has allowed us to optimise our product strategy through enhanced blending and beneficiation, supporting iron grades and reducing impurities.

To further enhance our ore, the Christmas Creek OPF infrastructure has been upgraded to include a Wet High Intensity Magnetic Separator to recover high grade iron from the finer ore fed through the OPF.

Cloudbreak utilises 20km of relocatable conveyors that can be adjusted and relocated to any new mining areas to offset the increase in costs. Currently, this conveyor infrastructure helps to otherwise offset a fleet increase and helps manage our product strategy, while being cost-efficient and when powered by renewable energy, reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Our Chichester Hub is also home to a 60MW solar farm, which powers Fortescue's daytime operations at Cloudbreak and Christmas Creek, displacing around 100 million litres of diesel every year.

Iron Bridge

Iron Bridge signifies Fortescue’s entry into the high grade segment of the iron ore market, providing an enhanced product range while also increasing annual production and shipping capacity. Located 145km south of Port Hedland, Iron Bridge is Fortescue’s first magnetite operation and incorporates the North Star and Glacier Valley Magnetite ore bodies.

Unlike Fortescue’s haematite operations, Iron Bridge produces a wet concentrate product which is transported to Port Hedland through a 135 kilometre specialist slurry pipeline where dewatering and materials handling occurs.
In the coming years, low-cost power will be delivered to Iron Bridge through Fortescue’s investment in the Pilbara Energy Connect project which includes energy transmission line infrastructure, solar gas hybrid generation and associated battery storage solution.
Iron Bridge is an unincorporated Joint Venture between FMG Magnetite Pty Ltd (69 per cent) and Formosa Steel IB Pty Ltd (31 per cent).


Western Hub

The Solomon Hub in the Hamersley Ranges is located 60km north of Tom Price and 120km to the west of our Chichester Hub. Solomon represents a valuable source of production, enabling the blend of higher iron grade Firetail ore with ore from Eliwana and the Chichester Hub to create our Fortescue's Blend product.

It comprises the Firetail, Kings Valley and Queens Valley mines which together have a production range of 65 to 70mtpa. The expansion to Queens Valley has enabled continued production of the Kings Fines product.

It also includes Fortescue's newest mine at Eliwana, which commenced operations in December 2020 and includes a 30mtpa dry OPF and 143km of rail linking the mine to our Hamersley rail line. Together with its innovative low profile designed OPF and dual stacker reclaimed, Eliwana has the capacity to direct load onto trains up to 9,000 tonnes per hour. Eliwana is now producing at an annualised run rate of 30mtpa, contributing to our low cost status and providing greater flexibility to capitalise on market dynamics.