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The ore is running short in Kiruna mine

Transversal sketch of the Kiruna iron Mine. Image: Wikimedia, credit: Borvan53
Transversal sketch of the Kiruna iron Mine. Image: Wikimedia, credit: Borvan53
Published by
Markku Björkman - 06 Nov 2018

In its exploration work for plans for future mining, LKAB has discovered that the ore vein where the fracture occurs does look different than expected. According to LKAB's CEO, the ore body reduces significantly below the level where the company is currently working.

Kiruna City Council Kristina Zakrisson has met representatives of LKAB and is not concerned about the message from the mining company.

- I interpret it as a message that it will probably not be breaking the new main level we have been expecting in 1335, the level that is breaking today. On the other hand, we continue to explore broadly, and we have other deposits all around, to see where it will be sustainable in the long run, both economically and environmentally, "she says.

"Reasonable Challenge"

LKAB will continue to assume responsibility for supply in and around Kiruna. LKAB has a tough time ahead but at the same time, the staff is not concerned about the situation.

- No, I'm not worried. But it is a really big challenge, says Jan Moström.

LKAB has identified an opening for refraction in the extension of the ore body extending to the north, but the discovery makes the situation complicated.

It's so unfavourable that we expect it to take the order of three years to understand how it looks, "says Jan Moström.

His conclusion is that LKAB can now work more like any other mining company, with greater demand for a more intensive search for new ore volumes.

We have had a very homogeneous mineralization but now we do not have it. This means we have to use huge resources on exploration and to develop new production systems, he continues.

The state mining giant, which has broken ore in Kiruna since 1900, describes the so-called ore body in the area as a disc that slopes obliquely into the bedrock. Since the 1960s, mining has subsided underground, before that, the ore was broken in the open air.

Today, the mining is taking place at the thousand-meter level.