Iron ore pellets & concentrate
Decarbonising our operations at IOC
Steel-making currently contributes 8% of global carbon emissions. So at IOC, we’re working to reduce our operational footprint while producing iron ore that helps to reduce emissions as a feedstock for steel production.
At IOC, we produce high-grade, low-impurity iron ore – an essential raw material for new iron-making technologies, including the evolving green steel market.
The way we produce our iron ore also helps decarbonise our operations. IOC operates near hydroelectric power, meaning much of our energy use is renewable. We’re also electrifying our steam generation plant and exploring ways to repower our trucks and trains with more renewable fuel sources.
Research and development are a key part of our race to decarbonise too. We’re trialling a plasma burner in one of our furnaces – the first of its kind, which could help us eliminate heavy fuel oil (bunker-C) from the pelletizing process. Through lab-based trials, we are also researching ways to use cold-bonding technologies, and substituting coke breeze with organic carbon sources and other non-carbon-based fuels. And we’re collaborating with industry partners such as Salzgitter to use green hydrogen to work towards zero-carbon iron production.
Innovation at IOC
Our team continually innovates to improve safety and production, using tools such as data analytics, decision-making support, and automation to drive growth and productivity.
The fully integrated operation at IOC is supported by two operations centres in Labrador City and Sept-Iles that allows us to ensure our mine, processing operations, port and rail system work together efficiently to achieve maximum productivity.
The rail network is the link between the two parts of our operation and all of our rail traffic is managed in real time using state-of-the-art technology and the latest computing, railway communications and signalling protocol technologies.
The mining industry is continuing to grow and evolve, so effective utilisation of our assets is critical for us to remain competitive, reach our full potential and lay a solid foundation for our future.
We have recently added a concentrator, pellet plant and blast hole driller to the automated assets controlled from our Operations Centre in Labrador City. In 2023, we will also add automated dozers and excavators.
Research and development
Innovation is essential to remain competitive in a changing market. So we’ve established an evolving R&D portfolio at IOC that’s already achieved many advances.
We’ve used R&D to improve our iron ore recovery and production by upwards of 10%.
We’ve also formed close relationships with best-in-class universities, government labs, and startups to assess new technologies that can increase production while reducing operating costs. Our most recent partnerships include research and trials conducted with COREM, College of North Atlantic (CNA), and Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) to challenge current processes and make more informed and timely decisions.
Building a better future together
Together with the Innu communities of Uashat mak Mani-utenam and Matimekush-Lac John in Quebec, Canada, we signed a new partnership agreement called “Ussiniun” in December 2020.
In the Innu language, the word “ussiniun” means “renewal.” Through this partnership, we will build a stronger future together – supporting local education, jobs, the environment, and work to preserve the unique customs and cultural practices of both communities.