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Karara, Western Australia

Bis provides major tailings management and operational handling services for Karara Mining at this site.

  • Location

    Karara is located 200km south-east of Geraldton in the Shire of Perenjori, WA. Land of the Kalaamaya people.

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  • Status

    Start Date: June 2013

  • Customer

    Karara Mining Pty Ltd.

  • Commodity

    Infrastructure, Iron Ore

The contract: Dry stack tailings

Bis provides major tailings management and operational handling services for Karara Mining at this site. Central to the contract is the management of the Tailings Storage Facility (TSF) mobile conveyer stacking system, which Bis currently owns, operates and maintains.

The TSF is unique in Australia and operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and is supported by Bis’ fleet of specialised earthmoving equipment. Bis was contracted to complete this work on an initial 15-year term, and currently moves approximately 9 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) of dry stack tailings for this customer.

As the tailings are stacked, the mobile TSF is relocated and expanded in line with the company’s tailings management plan. It is currently greater than 2km in length.

Mining operations

  • Karara is the largest mining operation and the first major magnetite mine in the Mid-West of Western Australia.
  • Karara produces a premium, high-grade (66-68% Fe) magnetite concentrate at a design production rate of 8 million tonnes per annum (mtpa). The project has a mine life of more than 30 years.
  • The operation includes a large open pit mine, complex ore processing and beneficiation plant and significant infrastructure and logistics networks.

Bis’ assets at Karara

  • People


    There are approximately 30 Bis personnel at Karara, including specialised fixed plant operators/maintainers; fixed and mobile plant operators/maintainers; HV electricians and mobile equipment operators/maintainers; and HD fitters.

  • Equipment


    Bis’ Tailings Storage Facility (TSF) is a mobile, extendable conveyor system capable of stacking a maximum of 2,850tph of dry tailings at 15% moisture and delivering these tailings to the processing plant at an average rate of ~2,000tph. These operations are supported by a fleet of heavy mobile equipment to manage the tailings.

Key project achievements

Delivering the right tailings storage solutions

Bis was approached to deliver a bespoke solution to meet the customer’s specific tailings managements requirements at this site. Bis applied its innovative approach to successfully implement a unique mobile stacking conveyor at Karara, making it the first mine in Australia to take full advantage of this dry-stack technology. The adoption of this dry tailings solution has delivered numerous benefits for the customer, including reduced cost, and the area required for tailings storage, as well as improved environmental outcomes. Bis continues to own operate and maintain this facility on site.

Health and safety comes first

The Bis team at Karara was proud to receive the 2018 Australian Business Award for Risk Management. This award recognises organisations that have achieved outstanding results through initiatives that demonstrate excellence in risk management.

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