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Wide loads make way for Xstrata's $25M converter

By: Sudbury Northern Life Staff

 | Apr 04, 2012 - 2:33 PM |
Police have been escorting wide loads from Lopes Mechanical to the Xstrata mine site in Falconbridge. The items being transported will build a new $25-million converter and a new crane. File photo.

Police have been escorting wide loads from Lopes Mechanical to the Xstrata mine site in Falconbridge. The items being transported will build a new $25-million converter and a new crane. File photo.

Xstrata Nickel in Sudbury is replacing an old converter and a crane at its Falconbridge site, which is why a number of wide load escorts have taken place since the beginning of the year.

The replacements are part of Xstrata's continuous improvement efforts and long-term plans for its smelter, according to Yonaniko Grenon, a spokesperson for the mining company. Wide load escorts are used to transport materials from Lopes Mechanical in Coniston.

A new $25-million converter will replace an older converter, which is at the end of its life. The new equipment will help convert sulfur dioxide into a form of acid that is captured and later sold to other industries, according to the company.

The new converter is being delivered in 16 modules up to and including this month. Four modules were delivered in March 2012. The size of the equipment was around 40 feet in diameter by 85 feet high.

In addition to the delivery of parts for the new converter, Xstrata is replacing an old crane that is nearing the end of its life. The new crane comes with a pricetag of $5 million.

The new crane was fabricated by Konecranes America in Houston, Texas. It is being delivered in 12 truckloads. The oversized loads ranged between 9,000 to 69,000 lbs.

Wide load deliveries will take place up until April 9.

The current crane is in operation in the converter aisle.

Posted by Arron Pickard

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