An update from the Mackay Regional Committee - December 2020

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I think we can all agree that 2020 has been an unusual year. The scene here in Mackay in November looks much different than I had imagined that it would back in April. I think we can probably agree that things could have turned out far worse.
 
It is unfortunate that Covid prevented us from having many face to face local technical sessions here in Mackay. They are great ways of sharing technical and local engineering knowledge and also a good opportunity for the local engineering community to meet. We are fortunate that EA Nationally stepped up the number and accessibility of webinars, covering a very good range of topics and this CPD is made accessible to our members via the EA portal.
 
We hope to resume face to face local technical sessions, in a Covid-safe manner, in 2021. We invite any local members who have a topic to present to contact the local committee.
 
As the year comes to an end, I thank the local committee members who have served this year. Your efforts are much appreciated. Without a good local committee, we won’t have good local events.
 
Many of this year’s committee have nominated for the 2021 committee, volunteering to continue to serve the local members:

  • David Verroen has volunteered to Chair the committee
  • Volunteering for the committee: Steve Cutting, Reagan Case, Bruce Wolsey, Neeta Silwal, Mitch Lees, Peter Rosier

We are still looking for a few more committee members, and so if you are keen to be part of it, please contact me. 

 

Thank you to our 2020 Committee

Deputy Chair

   

Reagan

   

Case

 

MIEAust CPEng NER

Member

 

David

 

Verroen

   

MIEAust CPEng NER

Member

 

Amy

 

Carter

 

GradIEAust

Member

 

Mitchell

 

Lees

 

MIEAust CPEng NER

Member

 

Andrei

 

Khaidurov

 

MIEAust CPEng NER

Member

 

Bruce

 

Wolsey

 

FIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Member

 

Neeta

 

Silwal

 

MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Member

 

Peter

 

Foley

 

FIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Member

 

Stephen

 

Cutting

 

FIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

 

Member Spotlight - Interview with Longest Serving Member, Bill McWhinney

Bill McWhinney

We caught up with one of Mackay's longest serving members.
 
Bill McWhinney, FIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus),  is a Fellow member who first joined Engineers Australia on the 25 May 1965.   He is 80 years old and retired from practice last year.
 
How much has the profession changed since becoming a member?
The biggest change is the education.  Kids are offered engineering subjects and can get interested in maths and physics in later years of high school now.  Certification has also ramped up in the last 10 to 15 years.
 
What is your fondest memory of Engineers Australia?
I did a lot of volunteering with EA in Mackay including being secretary for a few years and chair for a year or so.  I have great memories of site visits including a two to three day trip out to Mt Isa visiting mines.  I ended up spending  a bit of time going out to mines and realise why miners get paid so much!  Going underground is eye-opening.
I enjoyed attended monthly meetings where local members talked about their discipline.  Hearing from Electrical and Civil for example which was different to my Chemical background gave me an appreciation of the breadth of engineering.
 
Where and what did you study?
I studied at the University of Queensland.  I started with a Bachelor of Applied Science and Industrial Chemistry and then completed Chemical Engineering - 5 years in total.  I then stayed on for 2 years as a tutor and teacher to pay my way through a Master of Engineering Science.  I also gained a PhD in Mechanical Engineering with my thesis being focussed on the analysis and simulations of a sugar mill train.  This led to me being approached by Sugar Research Limited in Mackay - they came down every year to the university to attract new staff and approached me.  I ended up working there for 28 years.  At their peak they had about 70 staff and I was quite involved in sugar transport.
I then started my own practice MEM and Associates and had that for another 28 years.  The Sugar Mills remained a major client and I also did a lot of certification works for fabricators over the years.
It is a brilliant career being an engineer.  I only stopped practicing in November last year after my wife started losing her sight. 
 
What do you think is the biggest innovation to have come out of Australian engineering?
Computers have changed everything.  I gained a love of them back in my Sugar Mill days.  You have to keep up with the technology. From my point of view the modelling software now available has changed the profession, particularly how this can be used with clients - clients love it!  I started modelling about 20 years ago (at age 60) and it became second nature to me.  I found it gave me a better feeling for the whole job.   I still have 6 computers at home - all networked.
 
What do you enjoy doing now? 
Unfortunately my wife passed away recently, so I am adjusting to that.  She was my best mate and I miss her dearly. We have been doing renovations and the bathroom will soon be complete.  
I still enjoy learning new things and keeping up to date - I live on the computer.  I have a 2 and half year old Blue Heeler dog called Jess who also brings me joy.

 

Member Recognition

Chartered

  • Dean Lowe, MIEAust CPEng NER
  • James Lloyd, MIEAust CPEng NER
  • Abdul Hannah, MIEAust CPEng

EngExec

  • Matthew Vitale, FIEAust CPEng EngExec APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Fellow

  • Matthew Vitale, FIEAust CPEng EngExec APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)
  • Peter Zemek, FIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

 

Local CPD

We recently held our Annual Dinner on 27 November at Ocean International. Members in our region joined the local committee for an evening of jovial celebration and professional recognition. 
Check our photos of our night here

 

If you have a topic to present, a potential site tour, or want to get more involved in the local engineering professional community, please get in contact with us. The committee meets regularly and always welcomes new members - please email [email protected] and we will be in contact with you.

 

Have a Merry Christmas, I hope you have the chance for a break and I wish you a prosperous New Year.

 

Yours sincerely,

Peter Rosier

FIEAust

Chair, Mackay Regional Group

An update from the Toowoomba Regional Committee - December 2020

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With the limitations that have been in place due to COVID-19 since early March, until just recently the group has had very little opportunity or freedom to get involved in anything. As soon as restrictions began to lift, we wasted no time in getting a few runs on the board. This year involvement has mostly revolved around student engagement.
 
Three of the Toowoomba Group of Engineers Australia are formally involved with the CSIRO STEM program – Gail Kirkpatrick, Ricker Feril and Norm Purcival. I (Norm) have been assigned to Dalby State High School, where I recently spent a day talking to students in their Maths classes and looking at the work they are doing.
 
The things that struck me were that there is a change in how maths is being taught in that it now places a greater emphasis on integrating mathematical problem solving with written reporting. The students are expected to state the problem or parameters in writing, do the mathematical operations and then write a little about the answer or findings to demonstrate their understanding. This applies from the junior grades right through.
 
I was also impressed with one student who used Minecraft (gaming software) as a CAD tool to design a bridge.
The questions that were asked were predominantly around “will we really need to use maths when we go to work?”. Since my job has always been math heavy, I may have been biased but I was able to assure them that their time at school wasn’t being wasted. Since I work in the area of Waste Management now, they also asked very insightful questions about what is really being done in the areas of waste recycling and carbon footprint management. Hopefully I was able to reassure them that action is in fact taking place, even though it will take time to manifest.
 
It was an enjoyable experience and I was extended an invitation to come back next year.
 

Thank you to the 2020 Committee

I would like to take this opportunity to thank our 2020 committee for their continued efforts:

 

Co Chair

 

Ricker

 

Feril

 

MIEAust

Member

 

Peter

 

Reynolds

 

MIEAust CPEng NER

Member

 

Amy Annalisa

 

Bernier

 

GradIEAust

Member

   

Simon

   

Weier

   

MIEAust

Member

 

Glenn

 

Springall

 

MIEAust CPEng NER

Member

 

Daniel

 

Morris

 

GradIEAust

Member

 

Michael

 

Hobson

 

GradIEAust

Member

 

Rama

 

Rayala

 

GradIEAust

Member

 

Waqar

 

Butt

 

MIEAust CPEng

Member

 

Bruce

 

Ollason

 

MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Member

 

Ashleigh

 

Braden

 

MIEAust

Member

 

Alex

 

Guinane

 

 

Member

 

Sheikh

 

Alam

 

FIEAust CPEng APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Member

 

Md Mainul

 

Islam

 

FIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Secretary

 

Scott

 

Hanson

 

MIEAust CPEng

 

Local Project Updates

The big news of course if ARTC’s Inland Rail project which has been coming for a long time. The best source of info for that is their website and they have a Facebook page. The Inland Rail Program will drive employment when it hits the ground next year through the duration of the program and beyond. There have also been several solar farm projects west and south of Toowoomba.

Conversely, the time taken to grant the New Acland mine at Oakey permission to expand to stage three has been less positive for the region. If stage three was to be approved, it would include a new coal washing plant and a new rail loop which seeks to eliminate the stockpiles of coal which reside next to the highway at Jondaryan. So far, many jobs have been lost and the mine is at risk of closure, especially under the pressure of low coal prices. As the main employer in Oakey and Jondaryan, this will be detrimental to the local economy. Read more here

A positive outcome has been that Toowoomba Regional Council and State Regional Development have established locations for “incubator” cells to support new SME business development in Oakey, utilising council workshops and offices made vacant by the move to the new Charlton Principal depot. This is supported by a range of funding from various sources for new business establishment and development. The Toowoomba and Surat Basin Enterprise (TSBE) is also active in networking new business entries with the established community.

Council (where I work) has been busy. Council is Toowoomba region’s largest employer of engineers. While the capital budgets were challenged by revenue reductions due to COVID, the federal government has provided $50M of COVID recovery money to be used on capital works and spent within the region. Other councils like Western Downs regional Council, have received similar stimulus funding. 

Projects that are currently going on or just finished include:

  • The new Council workshops, stores and offices at Charlton Principal Depot. It is a state-of-the-art facility that accommodates 500 staff and cost $67M.
  • Kleinton Waste management facility.This facility is modelled on the award-winning Greater Toowoomba Waste Management Facility at Wellcamp and will be in operation before Christmas. The total project cost is near $20M, which includes rehabilitation of the old landfill site. Council plan to roll out two more similar but smaller scale waste management facilities next year at Yarraman and Millmerran and one the year after at Greenmount. There is also a program of rehabilitation of old landfills being progressively rolled out.
  • Landfill gas recovery from Toowoomba Waste Management Centre landfill.
  • More projects that I am not personally delivering can be found here

Wagners have announced a motorsports park to be built at the southern end of Wellcamp airport with $40M committed by the Queensland Government toward the $175M cost.  

Toowoomba and the Darling Downs is the place to be at the moment. The dynamic leadership teams are active in SEQ and the Darling Downs, influencing at all levels of government, lobbying for and winning opportunities for growth and continued prosperity which provides plenty of work for engineers.

It is important as members of EA that we take opportunities to support our fellows in the profession to make engineering a career with above-average security of employment. This includes helping to match individuals to work opportunities as well as promoting the benefits of becoming chartered and taking advantage of the CPD and networking opportunities available.

As a Chartered Engineering Associate and Associate Fellow of EA, I cannot over-emphasise the value that those post-nominals continue to be to me. I encourage all members to strive to obtain chartered recognition at their appropriate level of qualification and to become registered on the NER. It may seem hard at first glance, but it is worth it.  As a greater proportion of engineers become chartered, it will help to enhance the status of our profession and help protect those of us who have made the effort from the vicissitudes of life.

 

Member Recognition

We would like to recognise those who have recently become Chartered Members: 

  • Andrew Wright, AMIEAust CEngA NER  IntETn(Aus)

  • James O'Dea, MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

  • Michael Fairbanks-Smith, MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

  • Piumika Ariyadasa, MIEAust CPEng  APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

  • Nicholas Delany, MIEAust CPEng NER

  • Alex Wen, MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

  • Adam Davies, AMIEAust CEngA NER  IntETn(Aus)

 

Local CPD

We recently held our Annual Dinner at Toowoomba City Golf Club.  Our presentations were from local members who have also both been recognised with other organisations for their achievements this year. Zoe Eather, 2020 Women in Technology Awards Rising Star in Technology, Kym Murphy, 2019 IPWEAQ Women in Engineering and John Carr | Project Manager, North Star to NSW/QLD Border (NS2B).

It was also a chance to make some presentations to local members those who attended on the night.

Piumika Aruma 

   

MIEAust CPEng APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus) 

   

Chartered 

Paul Muir 

 

MIEAust CPEng NER 

 

Chartered 

Alex Wen 

 

MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus) 

 

Chartered 

 

Kym Murphy  

   

FIEAust 

   

Fellow & EngExec 

John Carr

 

FIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

 

Fellow

 

Check out photos of our night here: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmSuDg7V

If you have a topic to present on or want to get more involved in the local engineering professional community, please get in contact with us. The committee meets regularly and always welcomes new members - please email [email protected] and we will be in contact with you.

 

Have a Merry Christmas, I hope you have the chance for a break and I wish you a prosperous New Year.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Norm Purcival

AFIEAust CEngA NER

Co-Chair,

Toowoomba Regional Committee

      

Ricker Feril

MIEAust

Co-Chair,

Toowoomba Regional Committee

 

 

 

Building Engineering Capacity and Capability in Government Organisations

Building Engineering Capacity and Capability in Government Organisations

Governments around Australia have committed to delivering substantial infrastructure investments to support a post COVD-19 recovery. There has been a focus on engineering capability in the private sector to deliver this wave of investment, but the public sector also needs to understand its engineering capacity and ensure that it is able to deliver on the promise. The ACT Government recently released an engineering workforce plan to attract, develop and retain the engineering workforce required to deliver this infrastructure program. This workforce plan provides a blueprint for any government that wants to build its capacity and capability to successfully deliver its infrastructure investments. This webinar will present the workforce plan, its major findings and recommendations.

 

Speaker:

Adrian Piani | ACT Chief Engineer

Adrian Piani

Adrian Piani is an Environmental Engineer with over 20 year’s experience, predominately in the water resources, environmental and infrastructure sectors. Adrian started his career in the irrigation sector working on catchment scale water quality management issues before transferring to an engineering role designing irrigation delivery and drainage infrastructure. He then joined the private sector as a consulting engineer, and has had a variety of technical, project management, and leadership roles. Career highlights include supporting the development of Basin Plan for the Murray-Darling Basin Authority, and leading policy investigation work for the Council of Australian Governments on water trade. In 2019 he joined the ACT Government to take on the role of ACT Chief Engineer where he provides strategic advice to government on infrastructure projects and supports the engineering cohort through the ACT Government Engineering Workforce Plan. He is a Chartered Fellow and Engineer Executive of Engineers Australia. Adrian is a proud Canberran and is passionate about the role that infrastructure plays in supporting our wellbeing and quality of life.

Governments around Australia have committed to delivering substantial infrastructure investments to support a post COVD-19 recovery. There has been a focus on engineering capability in the private sector to deliver this wave of investment, but the public sector also needs to understand its engineering capacity and ensure that it is able to deliver on the promise. The ACT Government recently released an engineering workforce plan to attract, develop and retain the engineering workforce required to deliver this infrastructure program. This workforce plan provides a blueprint for any government that wants to build its capacity and capability to successfully deliver its infrastructure investments. This webinar will present the workforce plan, its major findings and recommendations.

Date:
24 / 02 / 2021 - 12:00 pm to 01:00 pm
Registration Closes
24 / 02 / 2021 11:00 am
Webinar available
Venue
Face to Face and Webinar
Engineering House
11 National Circuit
Barton
,
ACT
,
2601
Cost
Face to Face Registration
  • Member Rate: $0.00 ($0.00 excl. GST)
  • Technical Society Member Rate: $30.00 ($27.27 excl. GST)
  • Student Rate: $0.00 ($0.00 excl. GST)
Webinar
  • Member Rate: $0.00 ($0.00 excl. GST)
  • Technical Society Member Rate: $30.00 ($27.27 excl. GST)
  • Student: $0.00 ($0.00 excl. GST)
  • Non-Member Rate: $30.00 ($27.27 excl. GST)
Key Speaker(s)
Adrian Piani
Event Contact
  • Contact:
    Engineers Australia Member Services
  • Phone:
    1300 653 113
  • Email:
Maximum CPD Hours
1

An update from the Townsville Regional Committee - December 2020

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Welcome to the final update from the Townsville Regional Committee for 2020.

This year has thrown us some interesting challenges as we deal with COVID-19. Nonetheless, we were able to host a number of successful local events including our Women in Engineering breakfast, Townsville Flood Recovery seminar, Townsville Port Expansion webinar, Large Scale Retaining Wall seminar and our recent end-of-year event. Additionally, we now have access to numerous online events, available in real-time and streamed on demand through EA OnDemand.

We would like to thank the 2020 Townsville Regional Committee for their hard work and dedication throughout the year. It’s been a challenging year for everyone, and your efforts have not gone unnoticed. Thank you so much for your service!

Looking forward to 2021, we have some great events planned in Townsville including our kick-off event at JCU’s Area 61 and the Northern Regional Forum, planned for May 2021. We hope to see you there!

 

Thank you to the 2020 Committee

I would like to thank this year’s committee for their continued efforts throughout 2020.

 

Co-Chair

 

Emma

 

King

 

MIEAust CPEng

Co-Chair

 

Jason

 

Hockings

 

MIEAust CPEng NER

Deputy Chair

 

Madhu

 

Menon

 

MIEAust CPEng NER

Member

 

Brent

 

Lane

 

MIEAust

Member

 

Kevin

 

Yang

 

MIEAust

Member

 

Christopher

 

MacDonald

 

MIEAust CPEng

Member

 

Grahame

 

Lendon

 

MIEAust

Member

 

Alistair

 

Pott

 

MIEAust

Member

   

Jens

   

Grigull

 

AMIEAust NER

Member

 

Ben

 

Sellers

   

MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Member

 

Cosmin

 

Ghebosu

 

 

Member

 

Simon

 

Hickey

 

MIEAust CPEng NER

Member

 

Jodish

 

Puthoor Thomas

 

MIEAust CPEng

Member

 

Adam

 

McGinty

 

MIEAust

Member

 

Brodie

 

Windle

 

StudIEAust

Secretary

 

Jessica

 

Kirkwood

 

MIEAust

Local Projects

James Cook University Rapid Design, Build and Prototype Innovation Space (Area 61)

James Cook University’s vision to help turbocharge innovation in northern Queensland has taken a big step forward with the recent creation of the Rapid Design, Build and Prototype Innovation Space (Area 61).

The purpose of Area 61 is to be an integral part of the Northern Australian innovation ecosystem providing services to industry and the community to turn ideas into physical reality. Area 61 can provide rapid design, build and prototype services to industry looking to create innovative ideas that can be tested in the real world. At Area 61, industry innovators can co-design items that require the combination of design and build skills with software, electronics and advanced manufacturing equipment. The facility has been created to expand the innovation and research capability of the university and to provide this unique capability to cater to the needs of the wider North Queensland industry.

Area 61 will translate JCU’s teaching and research into innovation that generates jobs and economic growth for Townsville and the broader region. It will also lead to the creation of products and processes with real commercial application that can drive economic growth and diversity for northern Australia.

 

Member Recognition

We would like to recognise our newest Chartered Members, EngExecs, and Fellows. 

Chartered

  • Ben Halfpenny, MIEAust CPEng
  • Brendan Melita, MIEAust CPEng NER
  • Chris Jewitt, AMIEAust CEngA NER  IntETn(Aus)
  • Christopher Beric, MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)
  • Daniel Kennedy, MIEAust CPEng NER
  • Jacob Eapen, FIEAust CPEng NER
  • Julius Vance, MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)
  • Karl Jilg, AMIEAust CEngA NER  IntETn(Aus)
  • Karl Schipanski, MIEAust CPEng NER, chartered
  • Mohamed Jaditager, MIEAust CPEng NER
  • Robert Nathan, AMIEAust CEngA NER  IntETn(Aus)
  • Senduran Vigneswaran, FIEAust CPEng EngExec NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)
  • Terence McCrystal, MIEAust CPEng NER

EngExec

  • Senduran Vigneswaran, FIEAust CPEng EngExec NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

Fellow

  • Chengwen Han, FIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)
  • Jacob Eapen, FIEAust CPEng NER
  • Senduran Vigneswaran, FIEAust CPEng EngExec NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)

 

Local CPD

We recently held our end of year trivia night at Q Bar at Bridgewater.  It was exciting to be able to once again meet face-to-face with members to continue building the local engineering network/community.

We also had the opportunity to present some of our locals with earning Fellow, EngExec or Chartered status.

Senduran Vigneswaran 

 

FIEAust CPEng EngExec NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus) 

 

Chartered and Fellow and EngExec 

Jacob Eapen 

 

FIEAust CPEng NER 

 

Chartered and Fellow 

Ben Halfpenny 

   

MIEAust CPEng 

   

Chartered 

Mohamed Jaditager 

 

MIEAust CPEng NER 

 

Chartered 

Terence McCrystal  

 

MIEAust CPEng NER 

 

Chartered 

Christopher Beric 

 

MIEAust CPEng NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus) 

 

Chartered

 

Check out photos of our night here QLD - Townsville end of year celebration event 2020 | Flickr

 

If you have a topic to present, an idea for a site tour, or want to get more involved in the local engineering professional community, please get in contact with us. The committee meets regularly and always welcomes new members - please email [email protected] and we will be in contact with you.

 

Have a Merry Christmas, I hope you have the chance for a break, and I wish you a prosperous New Year.

 

Yours sincerely,

Emma King

   

MIEAust CPEng NER

 

Co-Chair, Townsville 

Regional Group

 

Jason Hockings

MIEAust CPEng NER

Co-Chair, Townsville 

Regional Group