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Quarry expansion on track with Astec


Hopkins Brothers’ Midgee quarry expansion is on track as the company looks to cement itself as a major aggregates supplier in Queensland.

The Queensland quarry has been working behind the scenes with Astec Australia and Scope Engineering to increase the site’s capacity to match the needs of the infrastructure construction industry.

The current Midgee pit, 10 kilometres south of Rockhampton, can produce up to a million tonnes of hard rock quarry products a year, but Hopkins Brothers is aiming to double that output after the modernisation is complete.

The new fixed crushing and screening plant has been custom-designed by Astec to integrate with the existing plant and deliver a high degree of automation in the new operation. 

The suite of Astec machinery in the new circuit includes a vibrating grizzly feeder, horizontal heavy-duty scalping screen, two Kodiak K350+ Cone Crushers, four 6203-32LP Horizontal Screens and a 3500EVT Vertical Shaft Impactor.

Astec Australia’s senior account manager Shaun Quinn said the project has extended its relationship with Hopkins Brothers.

“We’ve been working closely with the Hopkins family for a decade,” Quinn said, “and the strength of that relationship is evident in the amount of Astec equipment going into this expansion project – nine pieces in all.”

The new plant will enable Hopkins Brothers to produce high-quality alternative sources of concrete aggregates, sealing aggregates and road base, and the company will offer those materials at competitive rates to the local infrastructure construction industry.

Hopkins Brothers’ major investment in Astec equipment will ensure the company continues to play a key role in high-profile projects across the region. The list of the company’s significant projects over the past decade includes Rockwood Weir, the Rail Duplication Project, and sections of the Bruce Highway reconstruction.

“The Midgee expansion project is a major investment for our company,” James Hoseason-Smith, Hopkins Brothers’ general manager, said.

“It’s testament to the growth and maturity of the business in the construction materials sector and aligns with where we see ourselves in the coming years.”

The addition of the new crushing and screening plant is expected to double the output of the existing site.

Scope Engineering integrated Hopkins’ specifications and Astec’s equipment to ensure the plant design worked with the topography of the site.

“Topography is always a factor when designing a plant and typically you have a slight fall over the full length of a plant,” Scope Engineering’s managing director Paul Fletcher said.

“Luckily this quarry was flat, so Hopkins went about preparing the site for us to lay out the plant.

“Hopkins knows what products they want to produce and Shaun at Astec selected the right equipment to deliver that.”

The Midgee expansion is close to completion with checks and electrical works to be finalised in coming weeks. The project is on track to be completed by December.

“We’re coming to the final stages of the build,” Hoseason-Smith said, “and we’re extremely pleased with the progress.

“We’ve got the right people working on the right jobs, which makes all the difference.”

“The team from Astec, as well as Scope Engineering and Hitech Electrical Automation, have demonstrated their experience and professionalism in all aspects of their engagement with this project, and we couldn’t be happier with their expert service and advice along the way.”

According to Quinn, there were two key reasons Hopkins Brothers chose to partner with Astec Australia on the project – the performance and reliability of the company’s equipment and the strength of the relationship between the two companies.

“Astec’s aim is always to help our customers succeed and with this new plant at Midgee, Hopkins Brothers will continue to do that.”

For more information visit astecindustries.com

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