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Kaunisvaara, Pajala Municipality, North Sweden

Preliminary study on research in Kaunisvaara

Published: 23 November 2016

After a visit to the Minister for Enterprise and Innovation Mikael Damberg has representatives from the municipality of Pajala and Luleå University received funding for a feasibility study on making the disused mine in Kaunisvaara into a research mine. In the spring, the feasibility study will be presented.

With the car test industry in northern Sweden as a model the idea of ​​creating a platform for research in Kaunisvaara was born. The feasibility study will examine the interest in the mining industry and how to finance the project.

Kaunisvaara mining area Photo: Northland Resources
Kaunisvaara mining area Photo: Northland Resources

"In this research mine companies will be able to to test equipment and new technologies in a real situation and in an Arctic climate", says Pär Weihed, Professor of Ore Geology at Luleå University of Technology.

In October, a workshop was held in Luleå on sustainable mining in the Arctic. It was the host nation for the Arctic Council, the United States that have chosen to locate Conference Best Practices for Mining and Sustainable Development in the Arctic, to Luleå.

"The challenges of mining in Arctic are huge, not least from an environmental perspective, and a research mine in Kaunisvaara may be just the right time", says Pär Weihed.

In addition to equipment and technology, several research disciplines within the geosciences benefit greatly from a real mine of various research projects.

Already in 1918 the Geological Survey of Sweden found iron ore in Kaunisvaara. 2012 Northland Resources opened the first mine at the resort but the company went bankrupt in 2014 because of falling prices for iron ore. The open pit in Kaunisvaara is about 40 meters deep.

In the media

Pär Weihed

Weihed, Pär - Professor, Pro Vice-Chancellor

Organisation: Ore Geology, Geosciences and Environmental Engineering, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering
Phone: +46 (0)920 493987
$!userInfo.givenName Åsa Allan

Åsa Allan, - Kommunchef Pajala kommun

Phone: 0978-120 01