Fortescue Metals Group, an Australian mining company, has completed the acquisition of UK-based Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE), which will enable hundreds of millions of dollars in decarbonization initiatives in the coming years. Fortescue intends to use Williams’ battery technology, among other things, in goods trains and trucks.
To accelerate its growth, WAE will remain a strong independent company, while its leading battery technology division will work closely with Fortescue. Both will be managed by Fortescue Future Industries, Fortescue’s green energy, technology, and development company (FFI).
To commemorate the acquisition, WAE and Fortescue announced the creation of a world-first, zero-emission “Infinity Train” capable of transporting loads of iron ore without ever needing to be charged. The project will use gravitational energy to fully recharge its battery-electric systems, eliminating the need for additional charging on the return trip to reload. The regenerating battery-electric iron ore train project will not only accelerate Fortescue’s race to achieve net-zero emissions by 2030, but will also lower operating costs through maintenance efficiencies and productivity gains.
“The Infinity Train continues FFI’s inexorable march to change the world’s attitude to energy generation. To move business leaders and politicians globally to the realization that fossil fuel is just one source of energy, and there are others rapidly emerging, which are more efficient, lower cost, and green. The world must, and clearly can, move on from its highly polluting, deadly if not stopped epoch.”Fortescue Founder and Chairman Dr. Andrew Forrest AO
The technology will address the reduction of emissions in the difficult-to-abate industry in order for this technology to be commercialized globally.
“The Infinity Train has the capacity to be the world’s most efficient battery-electric locomotive. The regeneration of electricity on the downhill loaded sections will remove the need for the installation of renewable energy generation and recharging infrastructure, making it a capital-efficient solution for eliminating diesel and emissions from our rail operations.”Elizabeth Gaines Fortescue, Chief Executive Officer