Rio Tinto has appointed Sinclair Knight Merz as the engineering, procurement and construction management contractor for the expansion of its Cape Lambert port in the Pilbara.
SKM will be responsible for the delivery of a greenfields iron ore port facility, to be known as Cape Lambert Port B and located alongside the existing port, which will provide an initial shipping capacity of 50 million tonnes per annum.
The new port will include a tandem car dumper facility, a stockyard with associated stackers and two bucket wheel reclaimers, a screenhouse and surge bin facility, a 1.4 kilometre long access jetty and a double sided iron ore wharf with two shipping berths and a shiploader.
SKM will also deliver power distribution, control systems and associated infrastructure, including buildings, fuel and water supplies, and an expansion to the Cape Lambert accommodation village
SKM mining and metals general manager, Santo Rizzuto, said the appointment was an extension of a 50 year partnership between SKM and Rio in the Pilbara.
"By continually looking to create optimum value for our clients we are able to build on our long-term strategic relationships," Mr Rizzuto said.
"This was demonstrated by the successful delivery of previous expansions at the Cape Lambert port facility and Dampier Port, both of which have been recognised by engineering awards.
"Through key innovations, such as modularisation of the wharves and ore handling facilities, we delivered both projects ahead of time and under budget, with an outstanding safety record."
Rio Tinto is expanding its Pilbara iron ore infrastructure to boost annual capacity to 283Mtpa by 2013.
Rio has further plans to boost capacity to 333Mtpa.
Preliminary site works for the port development have commenced while awaiting full government approval.