With Rio Tinto Iron ore embarking on an expansion programme to increase their export tonnage from 220 MTPA to 333 MTPA, the expansion of supportive public and private infrastructure was essential. In collaboration with the Water Corporation, Rio Tinto initiated the Coastal Water Project to supply 10GL/yr of potable water West Pilbara Water Supply Scheme (WPWSS) to assist in servicing the predicted 25GL/yr demand for water by 2016. The water supply from the current sources (Millstream Aquifer and Harding Dam) was anticipated to be limited from 15GL/yr to 10GL/yr within a similar time frame. The 5GL/yr shortfall was to be sourced through other initiatives, more likely a desalination plant on the Burrup Peninsula.
The scope of the Coastal Water Project was to install; a bore field at Bungaroo Creek; a Transfer Pump Station (TPS); and 87km of pipeline to transport the precious resource to the existing Millstream network. Power for the new infrastructure was serviced via a 30km 33kV power line out of nearby Pannawonica, which required a robust solution to cross the well-known Robe River.
Unloading pipe at the Transfer Pump Station
Mining Photography was engaged to install two time-lapse camera’s to document significant parts of the construction process. The first camera was located at the TPS and captured imagery for the 16-month project duration. The second time-lapse unit was initially located at Kumina Creek, approximately 40km along the 87km pipeline, with the intent to capture the constructed work associated with laying the pipeline under a creek of size. Once this work was complete, the unit was relocated to the bore field to document the construction of one of seven bores.
During regular site visits to check, maintain and relocate the time-lapse units, we took the opportunity to document other construction works via still photography. This imagery included all aspects of the project with examples shown below.