Latest Space News
Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
Landing on Mars is difficult and not always successful. Well-designed advance testing helps. An ambitious NASA Mars rover mission set to launch in 2020 will rely on a special parachute to slow the spacecraft down as it enters the Martian atmosphere at over 12,000 mph (5.4 kilometers per second). Preparations for this mission have provided, for the first time, dramatic video of the parachute opening at supersonic speed. The Mars 2020 mission will seek signs of ancient Martian life by investiga...
Thu, 16 Nov 2017 15:07:00 +0100
The U.S. Navy's Communications Satellite Program Office, PMW 146, and Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) handed over full operational control of the fifth Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) satellite to the Naval Satellite Operations Center (NAVSOC). The October 11 milestone followed the successful completion of the MUOS-5 satellite's on-orbit testing and delivery of all operational products needed to "fly" the satellite. In April, the Navy, working with Army Forces Strategic Command (ARSTRAT), con...
Thu, 16 Nov 2017 14:04:00 +0100
As part of ESA's strategy to foster commercial competitiveness in Europe while focusing on its core aims, the agency has transferred ownership of several ground tracking stations for reuse by external organisations. By the end of 2017, ESA will have transferred three stations to national organisations in Spain and Portugal, who will take over the provision of satellite tracking services to a wide variety of commercial customers. The three stations involved in the transfer are all equipped ...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 19:33:00 +0100
Boeing [NYSE:BA] won large commitments across its twin- and single-aisle commercial airplane families, debuted key capabilities including the CST-100 Starliner docking and KC-46 refueling simulators, and announced services agreements at the 2017 Dubai Airshow. "This has been a very successful show for Boeing. Our regional customers have maintained their trust in our products and technology, and our partnerships in the Middle East region continue to grow," said Bernard Dunn, President, Boeing ...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 12:00:00 +0100
A temperate Earth-sized planet has been discovered only 11 light-years from the Solar System by a team using ESO's unique planet-hunting HARPS instrument. The new world has the designation Ross 128 b and is now the second-closest temperate planet to be detected after Proxima b. It is also the closest planet to be discovered orbiting an inactive red dwarf star, which may increase the likelihood that this planet could potentially sustain life. Ross 128 b will be a prime target for ESO's Extremely ...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 11:29:00 +0100
Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), has been chosen by the Italian space agency ASI to develop an instrument called RIME (Radar sounder for Icy Moons Exploration) for the JUICE (JUpiter Icy moons Explorer) mission, part of the European Space Agency's "2015-25 Cosmic Vision" program. Scheduled for launch in 2022 with an expected arrival in 2029, the JUICE mission is designed to study the Jovian system and more specifically its icy moons, Ganymede, Call...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
The Ariane 5 for Arianespace's December 12 year-ending flight for 2017 has completed its initial build-up at the Spaceport in French Guiana - where preparations also are moving ahead with four satellite passengers that will further expand Europe's Galileo global navigation system once in their final orbit. During activity in the Spaceport's Launcher Integration Building, this heavy-lift vehicle for Arianespace Flight VA240 underwent the assembly process that began by mating its two solid prop...
Tue, 14 Nov 2017 19:47:00 +0100
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded BAE Systems a contract worth up to $12.8 million to develop an innovative space evaluation and analysis testbed to support the development, integration, evaluation and analysis of advanced space enterprise command and control (C2) tools and capability technologies. The U.S. military must be able to quickly establish situational awareness and execute operations in space. Within the space domain, many thousands of objects that ar...
Tue, 14 Nov 2017 13:45:00 +0100
Orbital ATK (NYSE: OA), a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, today announced that the "S.S. Gene Cernan" CygnusTM spacecraft successfully completed its rendezvous and berthing maneuvers with the International Space Station earlier this morning. This marks the company's eighth successful berthing with the orbiting laboratory. Cygnus launched into orbit aboard an Orbital ATK Antares(tm) rocket at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility on November 12. The spacecraft then executed a ser...
Mon, 13 Nov 2017 17:45:00 +0100
Thales Alenia Space has signed a contract with ArianeGroup, prime contractor and design authority of Ariane 6, to design, develop, qualify and manufacture the telemetry transmitter of the new European launcher. The telemetry transmitter is responsible for transmitting to the ground the data generated by the launcher throughout the whole launch mission. It is the first contract of the company in Spain in the launchers segment. After three decades of activity in the space sector participating i...
Mon, 13 Nov 2017 17:00:00 +0100
What seemed at first like a rare instance of a huge, ancient galaxy revealed itself to be an even rarer pair of extremely massive galaxies, seen on the brink of merging when the Universe was only a billion years old. This outstanding source was first identified by ESA's Herschel space observatory, and later exposed in greater detail with the ground-based Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile. The earliest galaxies in the 13.8 billion-year history of our cosmos starte...
Mon, 13 Nov 2017 16:00:00 +0100
Gas giant Jupiter, organic molecules in star-forming clouds and baby galaxies in the distant Universe are among the first targets for which data will be immediately available from the James Webb Space Telescope once it begins casting its powerful gaze on the Universe in 2019. Thirteen "early release" programmes were chosen from more than 100 proposals after a competitive peer-review selection process within the astronomical community. The programmes have been allocated nearly 500 hours of obs...
Mon, 13 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
After a successful year-long test campaign by Airbus at IABG in Ottobrunn near Munich, the twin GRACE-FO (Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment Follow-On) satellites will soon travel to their launch site in California. During testing, the gravity-measuring satellites, which will track the continuous movement of liquid water, ice and the solid Earth due to Earth's changing seasons, weather and climate processes, earthquakes and even human activities, were subjected to conditions similar to t...
Sun, 12 Nov 2017 16:15:00 +0100
Orbital ATK (NYSE:OA), a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, successfully launched its Antares(tm) rocket carrying a Cygnus(tm) spacecraft today at 7:19 a.m. EST, from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia. The launch is Orbital ATK's eighth cargo delivery mission to the International Space Station for NASA. During the mission, designated OA-8, Cygnus will deliver vital equipment, supplies and experiments to the astronauts aboard the space station, as well a...
Fri, 10 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
A contract for two new generation communications satellites was signed today by Turksat with Airbus Defence and Space. The satellites, Turksat 5A and Turksat 5B, are based on the latest Electric Orbit Raising (EOR) version of Airbus' highly reliable Eurostar E3000 platform, which uses electric propulsion for in-orbit raising and station-keeping. "We are very pleased to welcome Turksat as a new Eurostar customer for the most powerful satellites of their fleet. We were the first to demonstra...
Thu, 9 Nov 2017 14:04:00 +0100
NASA's Orion spacecraft aims to send humans further into space than ever before, and ESA's European Service Module will provide the essentials for keeping the astronauts alive and on course. A review of the programme by NASA to assess progress is now showing a launch date from December 2019 to June 2020. The first Exploration Mission-1 will circle the Moon without astronauts to lay the foundation and prove the technology for a second mission with a crew. In Bremen, Germany, integration ...
Thu, 9 Nov 2017 11:42:00 +0100
A UK company has been selected to undertake the Assembly, Integration and Test (AIT) for a satellite which will help tackle climate change, Science Minister Jo Johnson announced today. Thales Alenia Space has signed a contract with the UK Space Agency to work on MicroCarb, a joint UK-French satellite mission which will measure sources and sinks of carbon, the principal greenhouse gas driving global warming. It is the first European mission intended to characterise greenhouse gas fluxes on Ear...
Thu, 9 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
At the Dubai Airshow, which runs from 12th to 16th November 2017, Airbus will showcase its wide range of innovative technologies, products and services, from market-leading commercial and military aircraft to helicopters and space systems. The Airshow, which was launched in 1986, represents one of the largest and most important aerospace events in the world. The Dubai Airshow is an important platform for Airbus to demonstrate its products and services to customers as the organisation looks to...
Wed, 8 Nov 2017 22:05:00 +0100
ViaSat Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT), a global broadband services and technology company, today announced it expanded its relationship with JetBlue, and will serve as the direct in-flight internet service provider to the airline. JetBlue aircraft will be upgraded to the latest ViaSat hardware, and will have access to the additional coverage and capacity offered by ViaSat's next-generation ViaSat-2 and ViaSat-3 satellite platforms JetBlue first offered the ViaSat in-flight internet service, branded Fly-...
Wed, 8 Nov 2017 19:05:00 +0100
Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley scientists were part of a team that helped to decipher one of the most bizarre spectacles ever seen in the night sky: A supernova that refused to stop shining, remaining bright far longer than an ordinary stellar explosion. What caused the event is puzzling. A Las Cumbres Observatory press release about the supernova, which was discovered by the Palomar Transient Factory in September 2014, noted that the explosion at first appeared to be an ordinary supernova. "Se...
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  • CV: Multidisciplined Senior Robotics/Power Systems/Rocket Vehicle Engineer

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    Personal information
     Name:<withheld>
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    Candidate Profile
     Date Submitted:07-02-2017
     Last Modified:15-02-2017 (02:07)
    Job information
     Current job:Multidisciplined Senior Robotics/Power Systems/Rocket Vehicle Engineer
     Employment Term:Either
     Job location:Anywhere
     Date available:immediately
     Industry:Satellite Manufacturers and Subcontractors, Satellite Operators, , , Launch Systems, Business Services, Consulting/Engineering Services
     KeywordsDetail-oriented problem solver and analytical thinker, capable of research and development or commissioning of large-scale, international project, or small scale local ones; results-oriented, in the individual or team environment.
    CV

    Executive Summary:  Detail-oriented problem solver and analytical thinker, capable of research and development or commissioning of large-scale, international project, or small scale local ones. Being results-oriented, in the individual or team environment, coupled with tertiary qualification and supervisory skills, highlighted by communication abilities; allows for projects to be completed on time and budget.

    My primary work skills encompass

    Commissioning / Testing / Calibration

    Marine Surveyor - Directional Positioning

    Fault finding & problem analysis

    Assets, upgrade or replacement planning

    Control - system design review

    Specification -Tender writing

    Machine reliability assessment

    Design checking - approval

    Research & development

    Tender evaluation - letting

    Process improvements - Waste reduction

    Engineering management

    Obsolescence analysis Inc. end of life

    Supplier sourcing - Local and Overseas

    Risk – Hazard assessment implementation

    Service Acceptance i.e. warranty control

    Naval Defence- sea trial testing

    De-Commissioning – plant removal

    In the principle areas of

     

     

    Marine, Offshore, Aerospace, Rail, Road

    RF, Microwave, VLF, Tesla Coils

    Robotics, Drones & Automation

    BMS, PLC’s, Profibus, Scada, etc.

    Hydro, Solar, Wind Power Power Generation

    Industrial & Military Electronics

    Engine Governing & Management

    Variable Frequency Drives –UPS’s

    Diesels, Gas Turbines & Rocket engines

    Mining & Process Plants

    Hydraulics and Pneumatics

    Manufacturing and RCM

    Recent work I have been performing: -

    Rocket Lab, USA. Auckland - New Zealand.

    Position: Contract Rocket Vehicle Test Engineer  2nd Quarter  2016

    I was employed for a short contract job, as a Vehicle Test Engineer, for the principal task as a member of 4-man team, to setup and perform the Structural tests on the Electron Rocket’s 9 engine power stage. This is this newly designed 1.2m diameter by 16m long rocket’s, largest and most complex set of tests; to prove the composite carbon fibre rigidity of this critical structure, by hydraulically applying the individual lift off full thrust forces of all 9 engines, plus various angular maximum wind shear loads, whilst the power stage was restrained by the four 90˚ spaced launch pad hold down wedges. Due to ITAR restrictions, I cannot provide more details.

     

    BAE Williamstown, Victoria, Australia                     3rd Quarter 2015

     Position: - Contract Senior Electrical Engineer

    Principal Project was to review the installed Prime Diesel Power Generation plant on the Australian ANZAC Frigates; to ascertain if the installed Siemens Alternator could be up-rated. This task covered both Electrical and Mechanical systems assessment of complete generator package and ancillaries.

    Work scope entailed locating, then review of original works test documents, shipyard commissioning documents and data obtained from various other sources. Also, performed short circuit analysis of the generator main power cables and main switchboard. Results were then published in 69-page report.

    I was asked to assist in a separate project searching globally for manufactures and integrators of microbiological marine anti fouling solutions. Contacted each new one, then added the acquired data to a spreadsheet for others to review.

    DNV-GL Singapore                                                     Nov 2014 – Feb 2015

     Position: - Contract Marine Electrical Control Systems Surveyor

    Job involves performing Marine Surveys on complete Ship Directional Positioning Systems

    Work scope covered FMECA review, System Integration Testing, Compartment surveys, Maiden Sea trials and annual DP sea trials.

    Vessels surveyed included ”new build” Deep Water Drills ships, done on 16-day sea trials off the coast off Ulsan, Sth Korea; Annual sea trials on DP class ships, off coast of Singapore and Malaysia.

    ASC Adelaide                                                              3rd Quarter 2014

     Position: - Contract ILS Work

    My work at ASC Adelaide, on the Royal Australian Navy Collins Class submarines, involved my performing Obsolescence Analysis as member of the Logistic Engineering (ILS) group. 

    My principal tasks involved the analysis of submarine materiel to determine lifecycle status; Healthy, Obsolescent or Obsolete, by searching multiple databases, hard copy document libraries and the world wide web for part and usage information.

    The materiel’s I reviewed, covered almost the full gamut of those items found on the Submarine, except for items of the weapons systems; which were assigned to another group.

    On quite several occasions as part of my analysis, I went to the view the item either in situ, or in overhaul workshops or in stores. This was done to clarify measurement, sub-model details, or specific characteristics that had not been previously recorded.

    In several instances this led me to instigate Obsolescence cases of associated items or the ‘parent’ of the materiel in review.

    As part of investigating, I contacted former, current and prospective suppliers for further information on their current models or offered replacement materials

    Once obsolescence has been determined, I then followed ASC documented procedures, to instigate changes to rectify this, such as: investigate proposed replacements, instigate further engineering analysis, and/or database changes.

    I was also actively involved in the ongoing revisions of the ASC Procedural Documents relating to Obsolescence Analysis.

    Some of the computer resources I used included two different CMT software packages, first being SIMS (Submarine Information Management System) and second PLM (Product Life Cycle Management Software), MS Office (word and excel) and various online databases.

    Rolls-Royce Marine Australia   Nov 2007 to April 2011

      Position: - Full Time Employee. Marine Automation / Electrical Engineer,                                                       

    Worked on wide variety of Naval, Commercial, Rig Supply and Anchor Handlers, FPSO’s and Civilian (specifically Passenger Cruise) shipping; performing servicing, troubleshooting, upgrading and commissioning of the hydraulics, pneumatics, electronics and power cabinets, covering amongst others, the following product areas: -

    Automation systems,

    DP systems: - Attended RR Training on DP in Norway.

    CAN bus testing, re-terminating; and in some cases, re-cabling followed by sea trial tests.

    Ethernet network performance testing and fault diagnostics.

    Fibre optic network cable testing, ‘Yard’ installations during retrofit works, connector servicing and repairs,

    Variable pitch propellers and Thrusters: - bow, stern, tunnel and azimuths,

    HV Pods Drives,            Steering gear,              Fin stabilisers,              Deck machinery,

    Engines: - controls, governors, monitoring instruments.

    Alternators and AVR’s               Variable Frequency Drives and UPS’s

    Switchboard: - LV, MV & HV working on electronics, metering, protection and power,

    NOTE: I worked On-board one of the AHT, for approx. 38 day duration, for a Jack up Rig tow, from Dampier to the Ashmore Reef, WA. The move used 2 Rolls Royce designed and equipped Anchor Handling ships.

    On RR Automation,

    Was sent to Longva to attend UMAS and UMAS V (BMS) automation training and spent 3 months in the assembly and test workshop.

    In the field was doing fault finding on all RR machinery space automation, switchboard automation and controls, HMI, SCADA DP, Profibus and CAN bus network.                                  

    On RR-Brown Brothers Fin Stabilisers

    Went to Brown Brothers Works, Scotland and was given Factory training on Stabiliser Fin Hardware and electronic controls, including Siemens S7-300 CPU PLC’s.

    Attended New Zealand Navy IPV ships, performing Yard Pre and Main Commissioning work, on “First of Class” and provided feedback to ‘Factory’. Made the minor modifications and upgrades to position sensing hardware and controls software. Attended and performed Sea Trials on remaining 3 of the IPV’s and second of class of the OPV ships.

    On RR Bratvagg deck machinery.                                                        

    Visited Brattvagg and was give RR training by Ricard Renkin. Included Siemens S5, S7 and Koyo PLC and RR Imbedded Micro 32Bit Marine Computer/Controller PC

    Most of the work I did was fault finding on Winch: -

    .   Hydraulics hardware, taking pressure tests, and speed measurements.

    Reviewing issues on the HMI screens and associated RR Marine Computers.

    Fault finding back deck wireless control link issues.

    Worked on fault finding on distributed PLC systems running SCADA.

    On RR Steering gear.

    Visited Tennfjord RR Factory in Norway and was trained by Lennart Tennfjord.

    Most of my steering gear fieldwork involved either troubleshooting of intermittent faults. For instance, I was sent to Durban, Sth Africa; Santiago, Chile and numerous Ship Yards in Singapore.  

    Again, worked on the complex electrics, electronics and hydraulic faults.

    On RR Engine and Generator work.

    As an example of my work in this area, I mostly spent time fault finding Engine Governor faults, specifically regarding Paralleling issues.

    Also, I reviewed AVR Quadrature setting and droop problems of a few multi set installations.  

    Education/Qualifications/Training

    Heriot Watt University, my ‘PhD’ was on hold due to Death of my mentor Emeritus Professor M. G. Say, but I am actively searching for a new Mentor. My thesis is called “Causes of abnormal electrical currents flowing in the neutral conductor between unloaded parallel synchronous generators”.   

    Monash University   'Graduate Diploma in Robotics’ (GradDipRob) Majoring in Robotics in Mining

    Ballarat University  'Graduate Diploma in Mining'. Current - completed Production Drill and Blast and Ore Reserve Estimation subjects.

    Monash University  ‘Ore Geology and Geo Chemistry ‘attended as a 1 semester subject.

    Monash University  ‘DQ axis modelling of Synchronous Electrical AC machines’

    Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. Electronic Mechanic Certificate,

    Automated Control Systems, Perth.  Workshop covering earthing, shielding and surge protection of electronics and instrumentation course.  

    University of Adelaide.   Intensive 7-day workshop on leading edge technology & issues on millimetre and sub-millimetre wave radio technology.

    Signal Processing Research Institute, DSTO, Adelaide imaging & sensing polarimetry workshop, covering low Hz to optical nearfield sounding too remote optical.

    Microwave, Millimetre and Submillimeter Wave Conference, Adelaide.

    Attended 36 major international presentations over a 3-day period. I attended those on antenna (normal, slot & microstrip), mmic’s, filters & fusion optics

    Australian Institute of Management I attended various lectures and seminars

    DoTC.   Amateur radio certificate, Amateur Station License (limited) VK3UDB        

    Strategic Corporate Assessment Systems P/L    Reliability Centred Maintenance (RCM) trainers course in implementing RCM in industry. Covered such topics as Maintainability Prediction, Reliability Block Diagram (RBD) analysis, Fault tree - Event tree analysis, Failure Mode Effect and Criticality Analysis (FMECA) and Reliability Prediction and Derating Analysis.

     

    Other Principle Skills and Qualifications

    Standards: - Australian, ISO, Mil. Etc. what they are how to make best use of them

    Instruments & Equipment choosing, buying &/or hiring instruments for specific jobs.

    Industrial Chemistry & Physics understanding and working with:

          Batteries, the life & failure mechanisms of.     Optics for cameras & lighting.

          Materials for insulation.  Understanding processes for PCB manufacture, making/testing of a PCB

    Radar, RFI, EMI and E3 measurements, lightning and surge control, TV and Radio

          Ability to analyse the types of electrical disturbances and how to combat them.

          Measurement techniques, inc. satellite up & downlink equipment.

    Writings:- I have paper and journal articles published, and I have written a few and presented

          many training courses.

    Parts Procurement: -   how to source unobtainable parts locally, and how to source overseas.

    Computer Hardware selection, component assembly and configuration of a PLC, PC, Networks, routers. Interfacing of computers to engineering & scientific measurement equipment.

    Computer Software Packages

    I am proficient in many major engineering and office programs.

    Professional Associations,

    Intelligent Highways and Vehicles Systems, USA

    Society of Automotive Engineers, Australia., Associate

    The Institute Diesel Engineers of Australia, Member no. 2002

    Association of Australian Diesel Specialists, Member No. 126

    Electrical Generating Systems Marketing Association, USA.

    Melbourne Society of Model & Experimental Engineers.
    Power Generation Services & Consultants P/L, and Industrial Support Services

    NOTE: - In 1976 I formed a company (PGS&C) and have worked direct or on Contracts, and have had repeat business from many of my clients. ISS was my trading name.

    Since I am multi-disciplined I have placed the following snapshot of my PGS & C work experience under the following headings, more for ease of review than any other reason.

    A. Civil Projects

    Project:   Global Railway Instigation done at Bremen, Germany. This Project is my VISION.

       Evaluated Siemens TransRapid Maglev train technology in relation to MY concept of creating a Global rail link. During a private run in 2000, at over 500km/hr, I was shown an emergency stop on a sweeping curve as an example of safety procedures. Upon return to station / workshop I was taken into the workshop and beneath the train to review its construction. Meeting followed, discussing power issues and drive motor technology.

     

    The unique design of this vehicle/track, in making the track the vehicles motor, allows alternate energy sources to generate the electricity needed for lift and propulsion.  

                       The current test track draws power from some 6-megawatt wind generator thus allowing this rail technology to use any source of available power.

                     From my evaluation, I formulated the Global rail link vision for the train to run at near supersonic speed via a main backbone containing 9 nodal hubs.  The radials would run at near to or greater than 500km/hr

      Station 1 would be near Brussels with radial feeders to other parts of Western Europe   

       Station 2 would be near Istanbul, which provides radials to Eastern Europe

       Station 3 would be near Baghdad, that’s allows link to the African Sub Continent.

       Station 4 would be near New Delhi, which has radials for the Indian Sub- Continent.

        Station 5 would be near Ha Noi that could have a feeder down the Indonesian Archipelago and via a submerged tethered tunnel could bring the rail to Australia.

        Station 6 would be near Beijing, feeding China with radials maybe as far as Japan

                Then up and across the Bering Strait across the planned ‘Peace Bridge’

        Station 7 would be near Vancouver, covering Western Canada and Western America

        Station 8 would be near Chicago, as the North American Central node with a feeder possibly      down central USA and eventually into Sth America.

        Station 9 would be then Montreal for Eastern Canada/ America radials.

    Then it’s a difficult build. Likely the track would travel across the Hudson strait to Baffin Island, onto Greenland, Iceland, Faroe Islands, Scotland, to 
     

     Station 10, near London, via Channel tunnel to Station 1, completing the Maglev Global Backbone. 

                     Due to the vehicle power bogie ‘wrap around’ track construction, the upper body could easily be made to carry containers or other removal cargo, not just passengers.

    Outcome:   Despite the ongoing threat of Terrorism around the world, I, and the people I have involved are committed to bringing this project to fruition. It is my belief that this train technology can approach supersonic speeds at rail elevations of only 15-30 meters above the ground.  Alternative energy sources such as wind, solar and hydro-power generation offer ways to transfer people and goods around the planet in a very green way; thus, reducing our reliance on oil or coal.

     

    Project:   Hyder Special Structures UK.

                     Project Consulting work in conjunction with J Gill, Director Hyder special structures.

                     Content highly confidential.

    Project:   Port Phillip Bay Bridge project.  This Project is my VISION and I am its instigator

             The Port Phillip Bay bridge project comprises the construction of the largest road and Rail Bridge in the world. As the Visionary behind this project I did the all the initial research cumulating in the production a preliminary proposal document. Then I formed International consortia for this project. Travelled internationally in 2000, visited & reviewed the world’s largest bridge structures first hand. Met with major project Financier’s in Europe.

                     This $4.5 billion dollar project is on hold due to political climate of the current Victorian Government.

    Outcome: This project has taught me without a high level champion Inside government it is almost impossible to achieve private venture projects that cover the public sector, no matter how well supported they are in finance and technology. However, I have not given in despite even receiving numerous death threats should I continue to promote this project.

    B.  Rail and Road

    Project:     Electrical Systems Protection.  Consulting and client training 

    Client:       Public Transport Authority Perth, Western Australia

                    Spent 5 days at the PTA’s main operation’s control centre, East Perth reviewing and teaching engineering staff about best methods for Earthing, Grounding, bonding Lightning and Surge protection of the Perth Metropolitan Rail network. This included HV power feeds and Earthing grounding interfaces from the WA State electricity supply company Western power to the PTA’s HV traction supply, their radio and microwave communications network and wide area distributed IT networks. Did a preliminary review of as installed lightning protection on the roof mounted communications mast and 2 remote masts/stations.

    Project:     Rail train-welding plant

    Client:       Comeng/ABB Transport now Bombardier transport

    During manufacture of the railway cars, this plant had around 20 three phase 400amp welding machines operating. The start of any or all of these was not timed in anyways, so in fact all could start at exactly the same instant.  Whilst the plant was being provided electrical power from the Victorian Electricity grid this was not a problem. However, during the power outages/power restrictions occurring at this Time, the plant was forced, at times, to operate on an emergency generator. This size of this installed generator could only allow a maximum of 2 welders to be started at the exact same instant, but had capacity to let 4 welders operate simultaneously.

    After reviewing the rail car manufacturing process in detail, and the welder’s technical documentation, I put forward a proposal to add a PLC to delay the start of all but one welder at any moment.  The client accepted this proposal and within two weeks the PLC was programmed, a special isolation interface PCB was designed, made and installed (by me) in all welders. The client’s electrical staff installed the PLC and ran the cabling to each welder and the generator. This system was then commissioned and worked superbly.

    Outcome:   This modification proved so successful that to the last of my knowledge the client was running this PLC welding start stager even on the Victorian Supply authority as it reduced their peak demand meter readings and thus their monthly electricity bills.

    Project:     Amaze-N-Tow   A new highly innovative & unique road transport product.

    Client:       Amaze-N-Tow USA-ISS Joint venture            Period:  2006-2007

                                 Engineering redesign of a USA designed mobile machine to comply with Australian Design rules (ADR). Locally manufactured and commissioned an initial prototype.

    The commissioning consisted of a complex number of tests that were performed on the individual sub-assemblies prior to final assembly. Several modifications were implemented because of these tests, which resulted in a better final product.

    Some of the tests included use of stain gage monitoring of frame members, electrical current draw of the power pack and electric brakes and measurements of hydraulic pressures in the lift ram, both in a static state and during initial road trials. Trials were done using various loads on various roads.

    Outcome:   The design and implementation of a marketing campaign followed, cumulating in an initial order. Manufacture & delivery in February 2007 of the 1st of an order of 6 units, was completed with balance of order to be spread over a 2-year period.

    C. Offshore, Oil & Gas projects

    Client:       Farstad Shipping (Australian Offshore Services)

    Position:   Electronic engineering services (working as an outside contractor to them)

                      Projects included review of DEIF engine electronic diesel engine governing systems of 4 main generators of the workboats servicing the Bass Strait offshore oil field. Internal electronic drawing and special spares/tools were sourced from Denmark. Resultant work improved plant reliability.

     

    Client:       Hawker Siddeley Engineering.

    Position:   Engineering research and fault evaluation.

                                        Tasks inc.: - Australia wide consultancy troubleshooting, commissioning of land & offshore equipment. I investigated electronic/hydraulic variable pitch propeller intermittent fault problem on Esso workboat in Bass Strait.

    D. Electrical, Power Generation & UPS

    Client:       Lincoln Scott Consultants

    Position:   Contract Electrical Power Generation Engineering consultant

                      I worked principally on the Power Generation and Power Factor Correction equipment for the Services Infrastructure Upgrade Project at ANZ Banking Group Mt Waverly Data Centre. Reviewed existing site equipment, discussed requirement, and prepared this section of the total tender whilst actively interfacing with other engineers on this complex project. 

    Outcome:   Was very valuable experience in helping me to work as a member of a large team and to enable me to see my limitations and overcome them.

    Client:       Shell Australia, National computer Centre, Doncaster VIC.

    Position:   Electrical consultancy.

                                        Task related to finding cause of intermittent loss of power at main switchboard. This fault was traced to badly designed phase failure relay. It was replaced with one of a more rugged design.

    Outcome:  Was invited to review the UPS battery bank failure after my experience with Health Computing Services. As a result of my recommendations Shell replaced the entire battery bank with Tungstone plante batteries.

    Client:       Health Computing Services

    Position:   Electrical consultancy, tender preparation and project management - liaison 

                      Calculated the power requirement of this computer centre. Performed an extensive review of similar UPS installations around Australia. Concluded that all were suffering degraded battery performance or premature failing of their batteries. After discussion with client performed a world review of critical installation and their ups batteries. Concluded that the Plante battery made by Tungstone UK was the only suitable product. Produced a tender for the supply and installation of a UPS with Tungstone batteries or approved equivalent. In conjunction with the client’s engineer over saw the supply and installation of the 250kva UPS system to its successful conclusion.

    Outcome:   As of 2002 the installed Tungstone plante batteries have performed flawlessly, and many other UPS sites thought out Australia have converted to them based on my recommendations.

    Client:       Naval Dockyard Williamstown

    Position:   Commissioning engineer on two projects consisting Commissioning of: -

                      A.  Two by 1900kva-6kv6 diesel generators, running in parallel with SECV supply.

                      B.  One by 1600kva-6kv6/7kv0 rotary frequency changer in parallel with 3 other changers

     

    E. Electronics, Automation, Robotics and Communications, RF, Microwave, Satellite

    Project:     Proof of Concept assessment of Satellite sub-earth surface imaging.

    Client:       Classified.

                      Travelled to Moscow to meet and review the work of Dr Ohartrin.

                       His work involved the analysis of the geological structures, for up to 1km below the earth’s surface; based on imaging provided from the Russian satellites.

                       I reviewed his data collection methods from the satellites, and his analysis methods on the received data.

     

    Was also taken behind the public areas of Polytech (Polytechnic Museum) - Политехнический музей, to meet a number of “learned people”, to discuss quite a few technologies, related to the sub-atomic particle’s, that were at the Core of Dr Ohartrin’s work. I was also able to meet some experts on Nikola Tesla, and discuss some of his works. Also, was able to experience the powering up of a +6m high Tesla Coil. I certainly never wish to be that close to an operating one of that size again.

    Project:    Explosive handling robot for Mining and Tunnelling work Pre Nov 2007

    Client:       ISS ((This is my own design project))

                      I am still working on the design and implementation of a robot to handle explosives at the work face of an underground mining or tunnelling operation. This robots task will entail: -

    Auto moving to the work face after the drilling jumbo has finished drilling blast holes,

    synchronising with the currently drilled hole data from the drill jumbo

    the selecting and insertion of a detonator into an explosive cartridge,

    the charging of the predrilled blast holes with aforesaid primed cartridge explosive,

    repeating tasks 1 & 2 till all the drill holes are charged,

    the tying off of all detonator cables in a predefined pattern, then safety review of “tying off

    the final connection of the linked detonators to the firing device

    auto retraction to a “safe” location prior to the Shot occurring and waiting till re-needed

    then repeat step 1 after the ore and gangue has been mucked out.

    Outcome:   After doing laboratory testing on the plastic wrapping material of an explosive cartridge to ascertain the force needed to penetrate the plastic with a blunt ended detonator; I designed, built and commissioned a robot gripping unit to hold the explosive cartridge during detonator insertion. This was trailed with dummy product in 2005-6. All facets of this design have created unique challenges. After some slight modifications field trails we done in late 2007 with live explosive, with early positive results.

                   This project has taught me how a simple task for a human can be so extremely difficult for a machine, but if one divides it as small steps then the complexity does reduce task to manageable steps that can be made to work; PROVIDING one still keep focused on the overall problem and its limitations at EVERY design step.

    Client:       Leigh Mardon

    Position:   Contract electronic engineer

        I had an average of 1 repair per week through this 5-year period. Repaired complex mixed analog and digital stepper motor control system printed circuit boards and industrial hi power switch mode power supplies. Required my sourcing parts internationally and also I became authorised to repair PSU’s of Lambda and Astec USA. 

    Mining Projects (Mechanical, Hydraulics & Electrical/Electronics focuses)

    Client:       Thyssen-Ruc Mining

    Position:   Consultant on Power Factor problem, Bounty WA

                      Investigated and produced a feasibility study and conceptual design on 2 methods of power factor improvement system for the shaft sinking winder high voltage motors.

    One method using traditional capacitors and the other by operating one of the standby generator sets as a synchronous power factor converter.

    Client approval was obtained and one of the generators was modified with a power factor correction controller connected to its AVR and run in parallel with the HV generator supplying the winder. The test proved 100% successful. This method was about to be implemented when the mine operator relented contractual terms and allowed the contractor access to power factor capacitors fitted on a HV spur line.

                     Outcome:   Before leaving site, because of my problem-solving skills I was asked to extend my stay survey and report problems on hydraulic shaft sinking jumbo rock drill in relation to pressure pulse fluctuations that were rupturing hydraulic hoses.

    Client:      Astec Mining

    Position:    Consultant on electrical and mechanical engineering projects, at Bounty WA.

                      Performed fault-finding on the 6-generator power station intermittent shutdown fault. This required a high degree of planning of the test schedule, as the power station powered the 3-shift underground mine, 24hr crusher and mill; and a mine camp.

                      Evaluation of as installed verses constructed documentation, showed considerable variations     that created delays and made re-commissioning after repairs difficult.

                  Reviewed and recommended change in protection scheme settings on the 33kv SECWA   incomer, the 11kv site distribution and the 3.3kv generation protection relays.

    Client:       Queensland Phosphate Ltd.

    Position:   Commissioning and Contract engineer.

    Part 1         Performed fault analysis on the intermittent shutdown of one set in a multi set power generation plant.  Since the power station also provided power to a sizeable town located some 15km away, as well as the mine and associated processing plant, careful planning was required for the testing to avoid total blackouts. The fault was detected as a 150Hz varying amplitude voltage being induced by large electromagnetic radiation emanating from 11kv transformer, located adjacent to the power station. This 150Hz voltage interfered with the generators electronic voltage regulator causing it to randomly shut down.  This 6MVA transformer was feeding a damaged underground cable to the mine, and had had its protection relays disabled. A report documenting the required cable repair, including time lines and costing was submitted to the client. Modification to the voltage regulator was done to isolate its susceptibility to this electromagnetic radiation this solving the problem.

    Part 2         Because of my excellent analysis skill the client insisted I stay on and investigate the intermittent problems on railway ore train weighting system. After 2 days’ investigation, the root cause of the problem was isolated to overheating of the PLC / computer system in the control room under certain environmental conditions. Simple thermal modelling, done using a TI maths calculator and temperature /airflow data, as recorded during the investigations; provided the solution to maintain safe operating temperature.  This solution was immediately implemented

    Outcome:   The client was extremely satisfied with my successful resolution to the problem. They had been fined large amounts of money by Queensland rail for ore trains that travelled over weight from “The Monument” to the East Coast ship-loading terminal; or losing money if the trains ran under loaded.

    Hobbies and Interests

    -       Building a modern version of an Analog Computer using state of the art electronic components.

    -       Restoration of my 6 different Vintage Computers circa 1960 to 1980’s

    -       Finally learning to cook stir fry’s

    -       Finishing renovating my house and garden

    -       Doing a Major relearning on Current Project Management Software.

     

    I have lived through an 8.2 Magnitude earthquake in Chile, and climbed into rim of a (then) semi active Asian Volcano. Found both events life inspiring.

     

    Still plan to:-

    Visit Machu Picchu in Peru,

    Visit “Clochán an Aifir or Clochán na bhFomhórach” in Ireland

    Visit Valley of the Kings in Egypt,

    Travel the Trans-Siberian Railway across Russia to Mongolia, and the Rocky Mountain Rail across Canada,

    Go down in a Bathysphere or similar deep sea vessel,

    Go into outer space.


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