SLIDESHOW: Chile turns world’s largest open pit copper mine into an underground operation

Located 2,870 metres above sea level in Northern Chile, the Chuquicamata mine is without question one of the jewels in the crown of Codelco, the world’s No. 1 copper producer.

But the centenary mine has only ten more productive years left, so the Chilean-owned company has embarked on a plan to transform the world’s largest open-pit mine into an $4.2 billion underground operation, with a projected output rate of 140,000 tonnes of ore per day.

Check below how the expansion project is coming along:

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All images courtesy of Codelco via Flickr