At the recent Vale Day event in London attended by International Mining, Vale announced the latest on its flagship 90 Mt/y S11D iron ore project. Up to October 2014, physical progress completion was 55% with start-up in H2 2016 still on course, and of the approved CAPEX of $8.09 billion, the trend is looking at a final total of $6.7 -7.1 billion with executed CAPEX so far at $3.30 billion. Vale states: “Our flagship project reached 37% of combined physical progress in Q3 2014. During the quarter, Vale concluded 83% of electromechanical assembly of modules, initiated the earthworks on the mine and received all mobile crushing rigs, part of the truckless system equipment, on site. In the railway and port, we initiated the pile driving for the bridges over Sossego and Parauapebas rivers, while in the offshore north berth we reached 31% of completion.”Galib Chaim, Executive Director Capital Projects told IM when asked about progress with primary mining and any anticipated issues with the use of the new fully mobile rig design from Sandvik: “We already use IPCC methods at operations in Brazilian iron ore and Australian coal and at S11D have already made good progress with the mine, having advanced more than we had planned. Earthworks will complete ahead of the due date, with the contractor having reached its target also ahead of the due date. Earth movement to date totals 15 million m3. The mine schedule does not see production until H2 2016 and the main truckless rigs and components are already on site, as is the bulk of the conveyor system. Much of the equpiment was made in China and there have been no issues with our key suppliers.” Some 69 modules for project equipment were preassembled and transported by road to site. He also directly referred to “two smaller capacity IPCC units” that it already uses in Brazil, a reference the two ThyssenKrupp fully mobile IPCC rigs that Vale has already been using for some time at the Carajas N4E operation.Also at Carajas, Vale it has delivered the licencing of orebody N4WS, with the N5S licence expected soon. N4WS is a key part of 2015 and 2016 production plans having higher quality ore and a lower strip ratio. the N4WS area is also close to the Plant 2 primary crusher, which reduces average transportation costs.