Image: Century Mine: Successful concentrate transfer pipeline refurbishment

Oil & Gas1 min read

Century Mine: Successful concentrate transfer pipeline refurbishment

North West Queensland
New Century Resources
March – August 2018

Ausenco was tasked by New Century Resources (NCR) with returning their long-distance slurry pipeline to operational status after 2 years in care and maintenance.

The 304km underground pipeline was used to transfer processed zinc and lead concentrates to Century’s port operation at Karumba.

Due to the ambitious delivery deadline, Ausenco relied on existing relationships with vendors to support immediate mobilisation on acceptance of the proposal.

While Ausenco has designed and engineered the vast majority of long-distance slurry pipelines globally, the NCR project presented a number of unique challenges.

Due to a change in ownership and years of down time, documentation on the pipeline asset and location of the 2 stuck pigs which were blocking the pipeline, was scarce.


Using pressure wave assessment and flow calculations, Ausenco was able to accurately identify the location of the pigs and progress with their dislodgement.

The remote location of the linear infrastructure project, hampered by a lack of process control system communications, highlighted Ausenco’s proficiency in smart logistics and planning.

Ausenco delivered the project, ahead of schedule - an impressive demonstration of Ausenco’s ability to mobilise in a very short time frame and to a remote area.

The early project completion, enabling early restart of production, provided substantial cost savings for the client. This, together with the environmental and cost benefits of pipeline transport over road or rail options ensured Ausenco delivered significant value to New Century Resources.