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Pike River's Continuous Mining Machine Arrives

news release 28 August 2008

Pike River's Continuous Mining Machine Arrives

Pike River Coal Limited is gearing up for coal production with the delivery to New Zealand of the first of two continuous mining machines, costing in excess of $5 million each. The first continuous miner, custom made for cutting access roads through coal, arrives in Nelson tonight by ship from Australia and is due for delivery to the Pike River mine site next week.

“Delivery of the 74 tonne continuous miner within budget and ready for coal mining is the culmination of a two year exercise” says Pike River’s chief executive Gordon Ward. The continuous miners will be introduced into the underground mine over coming months to operate in conjunction with Pike River’s existing $4.2 million roadheader cutting machine.

The roadheader, which can cut rock as well as coal, is already commissioned and ready to commence pit-bottom construction west of the Hawera fault, once the tunnel intersects the coal seam.

When pit-bottom is completed, all three machines will be used to cut roads in the coal deposit providing access for the hydro-monitor equipment, which uses high pressure water to cut coal.

The second continuous miner is due to arrive in New Zealand in October 2008. The Pike River mine is expected to produce 200,000 tonnes of coal by 30 June 2009 and then an average of 1 million tonnes per annum for the life of mine.


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