Sweden’s northernmost city, Kiruna, owes much of its vitality to mining company Luossavaara-Kiirunavaara Aktiebolag (LKAB), which operates the world’s largest underground mine nearby. Situated within the Arctic Circle, the mine produces 80,000 tons of iron ore each day. It’s been an important source of income for Sweden and key to Kiruna’s prosperity since the city was founded in 1900.
Unfortunately, continued extraction of the iron seam that runs underneath Kiruna has begun to threaten the city. There’s potential for buildings to crack or collapse and for electricity and water supply lines to be damaged.
Rather than close the mine, local leaders made the decision to move Kiruna instead—shifting the entire city three kilometers to the east. Doing so requires transporting or demolishing approximately 3,000 buildings, including homes, offices, schools, city hall and even a hospital.
LTH Traktor, a sub-contractor of LKAB, wants to make sure buildings that need to be demolished are done so safely and on schedule—and for that, the company is turning to Caterpillar.
“We need reliable equipment and service that is best in class,” says Benny Axelsson. “That’s why we work with a reliable partner like Cat® dealer PON Sweden, who can offer the equipment we need to get the job done.”
Recently, LTH Traktor purchased a Cat MP30 multi-processor, which is mounted on its 330F excavator.
“The single-cross mounted cylinder with speed valve provides exceptional cutting and closing force, while the 360 degree rotation enables it to work from virtually any angle,” Axelsson says. “We like the high capacity and strength of the MP30.”
Moving the city will happen in phases and should be completed by 2040.