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Western Australian first - 40-metre high clinker dome inflated at Kwinana Bulk Terminal

In a Western Australian first, Fremantle Ports today inflated a 40-metre high cement clinker dome at its Kwinana Bulk Terminal in the Outer Harbour, marking the first time such a structure has been installed in Western Australia. Taking 24 hours to inflate, the giant white dome is the second of its type in Australia and is integral to Fremantle Ports’ new import circuit facility which will streamline the importation of clinker - the principal element in the manufacture of cement.
  • corporate
  • Industrial
  • Published 15 Mar 2024

The new clinker circuit project consists of the 40-metre high storage dome and a covered conveyor network which will link directly to the adjacent Cockburn Cement Ltd plant and also deliver efficiency benefits to the State’s other major clinker importer, BGC.

Fremantle Ports CEO Michael Parker said the storage dome is able to hold an entire shipment of clinker - around 40,000 tonnes - with the project replacing existing aged cargo-handling assets with new facilities capable of handling future trade growth.

“Without clinker, industry stops and every tonne of the commodity entering Western Australia comes through the Kwinana Bulk Terminal.  More than 1.1 million tonnes of clinker are imported each year through the Kwinana Bulk Terminal, destined for domestic, commercial and industrial construction projects throughout the State. Around half comes from Indonesia, with the remainder from Japan, Malaysia, Philippines and the United Arab Emirates,” Mr Parker said.

Mr Parker said Fremantle Ports chose a dome storage solution instead of a conventional dry product shed as it has a smaller ground footprint at the Kwinana Bulk Terminal.

“The clinker dome holds the same amount of product as a conventional shed but has a much smaller ground footprint. This is of significant benefit to future proofing the Kwinana Bulk Terminal as we can make space for other trades, sheds and systems as we continue to develop and grow in the years to come.”

The dome was built using cutting edge technology - firstly constructing a concrete ring beam, then inflating an air form membrane and spraying a layer of foam before finally installing steel reinforcing and applying shotcreting to the inside of the membrane.

“The instalment of the dome and the clinker import circuit facility is a very exciting investment, providing our customers faster cargo-handling, quicker ship turnaround times and more efficient landside operations.

“This project supports the construction industry in Western Australia and is a key part of our long-term planning to facilitate trade through the Port of Fremantle,” Mr Parker said.

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