LKAB – one of Sweden’s oldest industrial companies – mines magnetite ore in some of the world’s richest iron ore deposits, located in the Arctic Circle in Swedish Lapland. Uponor Infra has been working in the Svappavaara mine area for five seasons and is now building the external water system pipelines for the world’s first pelletising plant NOx scrubber in Kiruna as part of an installation contract for LKAB.
LKAB is one of Sweden’s oldest industrial companies. LKAB mines mostly magnetite ore in some of the world’s richest iron ore deposits, located in the Arctic Circle in Swedish Lapland. The company was founded in 1890 and has been an important cog in the Swedish export industry and industrial development for more than a century. Throughout this period the company has played the role of reliable supplier and partner to the European steel industry.
Today LKAB is a high-tech mineral group with large-scale operations in a competitive global market. Although LKAB is a small producer in terms of tonnes of iron ore delivered, it is one of the world’s leading process exponents and the world’s secondlargest producer of iron ore pellets. Other industrial minerals have been added to its product portfolio alongside the rich, high-grade iron ore from the north. This makes LKAB a reliable supplier that is constantly being developed with an eye on the future.
Mining in northern Sweden for more than 120 years
LKAB’s mines are located in Kiruna, Malmberget and Svappavaara in northern Sweden. LKAB has been mining iron ore here for more than 120 years. In the early days, mining was done in open pits. Today, LKAB has the world’s largest and most modern underground iron ore mines. LKAB has achieved this by engaging in many years of constant development and extensive research and development to maintain a competitive cost level in ore production.
The ore body in Kiruna is about four kilometres long and has a depth of two kilometres. To date, more than one billion tonnes have been mined. A new main haulage level at 1,365 metres went into operation in 2013 and will secure mining operations for another 20–30 years.
The Malmberget mine consists of about 20 ore bodies. The deposits consist of pure magnetite ore. In the Malmberget mine, a new main haulage level at 1,250 metres was inaugurated in 2012, considerably extending the lifetime of the mine.
The newly opened Gruvberget mine in the Svappavaara ore field is operated as an open pit mine. This mine, together with the planned Leväniemi and Mertainen mines close to Svappavaara, will produce about 25% of the company’s total output of iron and ore in 2015.
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