Sustainability in Ampcontrol

The Mackay Service team have been enjoying clean energy and reduced power bills since a 99-Kilowatt solar PV system was installed on the rooftop and switched on in February this year.

As a leader in electrical engineering and with greater expansion into renewable energy solutions, there was the need to look internally at Ampcontrol business practices and how we can improve our own sustainable practices.

Originally planned and designed internally by CPS and the Mackay team, with a local electrical contractor performing the installation, the project took advantage of our internal expertise and our external supplier relationships.

Key Stats on the Project:

  • Rooftop solar array consisting of 256 x 390-watt Jinko PV panels
  • Generating an estimated 120,000 kWh per annum of renewable energy
  • Accounting for 45% of total site power requirements
  • Avoiding up to 85 tonnes of carbon emissions per annum, or approximately 1.3% of Ampcontrol’s total carbon emissions

The success of this project shows the impact of how expanding to renewable options can have both a positive economical impact and delivers fantastic sustainability outcomes.

Click here to learn more about our renewable solutions and stand alone power systems.

UON Students present to Ampcontrol CEO

Ampcontrol has again in 2021 had the opportunity to provide a real-world product and organisation to be incorporated into the University of Newcastle’s Innovation and Entrepreneur course.

As part of the course students were asked to identify problems and project innovations on the product of Solar Cube, developed and delivered to market by Boundary Power, an Ampcontrol joint venture company.

On Thursday the 21st of October, Ampcontrol engineers and executives had the pleasure of listening to the 2021 cohort of students as they presented their final report and findings on Boundary Power and Solar Cube.

The groups presentations were the culmination of the student’s time in the capstone course and saw each group pitch their solutions to Ampcontrol senior leaders and CEO, Rod Henderson. As a final year course, this can also be seen as the practical application of everything a student has learnt through-out their business degree.

This years’ engagement with the University and its Innovation and Entrepreneur students is the second opportunity that Ampcontrol has had to be involved. In 2020, Ampcontrol offered the Gilghi project, an innovative water treatment plant to be used in regional and remote communities that have limited access to water, as the product for research.

Ampcontrol has a long-standing relationship with the University and is an advocate for innovative learning. Ampcontrol prides itself in working with the UoN to give students practical experiences working on real world innovative products and developing a stronger connection to the wider Newcastle community.

Key to the success of the course is the partnership and joint investment by both UoN and Ampcontrol’s team. Ampcontrol’s Chief Technology Officer, Tim Wylie, Learning & Development Specialist, Mikhaila Halford and Academic Garry Haworth came together to enable the opportunity. The partnership and engagement from both UoN and Ampcontrol is what allows the students to achieve their success.

A great opportunity for the future innovators who were involved, all who can be confident in their abilities. Congratulations to each of the students of University of Newcastle’s Innovation and Entrepreneur course on a very successful program. Well done!

Lear more about how Ampcontrol provides graduates with hands-on, practical experience in the Ampcontrol Graduate Program.

Ampcontrol Energising the Newcastle Jets for success with major sponsorship

Ampcontrol has signed on to support the Newcastle Jets as Major Sponsor for the upcoming 2021/2022 Isuzu UTE A-League season.

Energising the team when they play across the country, the brand will be proudly represented on the front of the Newcastle Jets away-game jersey. The upcoming season is set to launch at the Jets home ground, Newcastle’s McDonald Jones Stadium on Sunday 21st November.

The first Major Sponsorship for Ampcontrol, the alignment with The Newcastle Jets and the A-League is fitting. Ampcontrol, junior Football clubs across Australia, the Newcastle Jets and the A-League are all looking to the future.

Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO, Rod Henderson said “Like our people, we have a great connection to community and sport, and we are proud to be supporting the Newcastle Jets as they move into a new era of growth and possibilities. What a great time it is for Football in Australia.’

Read the full Media Release below.

Download Media Release

Ampcontrol Co-Founder receives 2021 UON Alumni Award

Peter Cockbain AM, Co-Founder of Ampcontrol, is the recipient of the 2021 Alumni Medal for Professional Excellence in the University of Newcastle Alumni Excellence Awards.

The Alumni Medal for Professional Excellence recognises outstanding leadership, knowledge, and professional practice – the highest honour of the University’s Alumni Excellence Awards.

Peter is a distinguished innovator, entrepreneur, industrialist, philanthropist, and one of Australia’s most highly regarded and influential engineers. In 2010, Engineers Australia named Peter one of Australia’s 100 Engineering Leaders of the past century. In 2015 he became a Member of the Order of Australia for his significant services to engineering.

Under Peter Cockbain’s leadership, Ampcontrol has maintained strong ties with the University of Newcastle’s College of Engineering, Science and Environment, including supporting undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships, internships, lecturing and tutoring, and funding of a Chair in Power Engineering.

Peter acknowledges that the University of Newcastle has been extremely important to his career and to the growth of Ampcontrol.

On winning the Alumni Medal for Professional Excellence, Peter Cockbain AM said, “It is a great honour and surprise to receive a University of Newcastle Alumni Excellence Award, amid the hundreds of thousands of members of the Alumni. I sincerely thank the University of Newcastle for this acknowledgement.”

The long list of high profile national, state and regional awards Ampcontrol has received for its innovation, design and technology is a testament to Peter’s founding philosophies set down in 1968 on the dirt floor of the shed in suburban Jesmond, when Ampcontrol was originally established.

Read the full media release below:

Download Media Release

Ampcontrol named on Fortunes 2021 Change the World list

Ampcontrol and Aurecon have been recognised in Fortune Magazine’s Change the World List for 2021 for our joint project Gilghi. The list recognises companies that have had measurable social impact, with key consideration to the benefit that the socially impactful work brings to the company and how innovative the company’s efforts are, relative to the wider industry.

Gilghi is an innovative solution that seeks to provide remote and regional communities with clean drinking water. While groundwater is abundant in Australia, it is undrinkable due to high salinity, mineral content and the high cost of desalination. Remote and regional communities like the Gillen Bore community which until Gilghi’s installation in 2019 relied on the continued truck transport of potable water due to the high salinity, hardness and low pH levels found in their existing bore water, now have a low cost, solar powered water treatment plant the size of a shipping container that can process up to 250,000 litres of water a day.

Utilising a stand-alone hybrid power supply consisting of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels, a back-up diesel generator and battery storage, Gilghi is designed to be a renewable energy solution that can stand up to the demanding environmental conditions experienced within the isolated communities in which it is deployed.

The first Gilghi system, in the Northern Territory hamlet of Gillen Bore, has now been running successfully for two years with virtually no downtime. Its creators aim to re-create the system in other drought-stricken areas, in regions with contaminated groundwater, and in island communities

Gilghi, designed to improve the accessibility of clean drinking water within remote communities meets all key criteria for the recognition listing.

Gilghi along with other award-winning Ampcontrol projects such as Solar Cube, represent Ampcontrol’s commitment to challenging existing conditions through innovation, while working with integrity to make good decisions for our customers, our business and each other.

For further information on Gilghi and the benefits it’s able to provide to remote communities, click here: https://www.cpsnational.com.au/remote-area-water/

ResTech Work Integrated Learning interns nominated for Student of the Year Award.

ResTech is a joint venture between Ampcontrol and the University of Newcastle. Our teams at ResTech provide research and development and innovative product development solutions in electrical and electronic engineering.

We bridge the gap between academia and industry, and offer opportunities for students at the University to undertake Work Integrated Learning (WIL) projects.

We are delighted to announce our nomination of two of our most recent ResTech WIL students, Tiana Leck (Bachelor of Medical Engineering (Honours) / Bachelor of Mechatronics Engineering (Honours), and Jialing Chen (Bachelor of Mechatronics Engineering, (Honours), for the University of Newcastle 2021 Employability Excellence Awards, Work Integrated Learning Student of the Year Award.

Both Tiana and Jialing demonstrated exceptional ability during their tenure at ResTech, Ampcontrol Technology and Ampcontrol Group Engineering; they worked toward addressing real-world solutions in the engineering sector.

Jialing’s focus was to investigate safety performance in gas detection technology in an underground mining environment. Jialing researched and designed several experiments and carried out testing on the apparatus that she constructed specifically for this purpose. In addition, Jialing explored an emerging gas detection technology platform based on the integration of a laser beam. Both of Jialing’s research projects were influential in identifying future product design decisions for Ampcontrol’s gas monitor product suite.

Tiana’s WIL projects were multifaceted and based on her interest into Ampcontrol’s ICU Emergency Ventilator, designed, and manufactured in 2020 for NSW Health.

During her industry placement with ResTech, Tiana helped to design a Biomedical Engineering STEM program for secondary school students, focusing on Ampcontrol’s ventilators and the engineering design process. Tiana developed educational content for the Higher School sector that included multimedia instructional materials and experiments directed at solving real-world problems. The content developed as part of Tiana’s WIL placement is now published and used across NSW High Schools.

Tiana also articulated the Biomedical Engineering regulatory ecosystem and taxonomy for Ampcontrol. Through her research, she effectively demystified this industry sector and supported Ampcontrol business decision around its involvement in the Biomedical industry.

The Awards showcase the students, staff and community partners that inspire excellence in the chosen field and all facets of employability development including the University’s industry, community, and business collaborators.

Award achievers will be announced on Thursday 18 November.

To find out more about ResTech, visit – https://www.restech.net.au/

Apprentice Program 2022

Applications have now closed for the 2022 Apprenticeship Program, to be the first to hear about future intakes, join our talent community.

Our Ampcontrol Apprenticeship Program for 2022 is now open. Ampcontrol takes great pride in developing the skills of our people, to ensure we can deliver the best possible solutions for our customers.

We are seeking highly motivated and innovative people looking to be part of a progressive organisation where they can grow their career. Our goal is to ensure our apprentices master their trade through hands on, practical training and a supportive approach to formal education.

We reward curiosity and will encourage you to challenge the status quo and come up with new ideas as well as supporting, teaching, and mentoring you as you complete your education.

We are seeking applications for the following careers: Multiple positions are available.

Electrician Apprenticeship (Certificate III)
Based in our Overhauls and Services division at Tomago. An Electrician Apprentice will work on the overhaul, upgrade, and repair of electrical and electronic equipment, for use across multiple environments, including surface and underground mining hazardous environments.

Electronics Apprenticeship (Certificate III)
Electronics and Electrician Apprenticeships are available through our Cameron Park operations. Apprentices will work on the manufacture of a range of cutting-edge electronics across monitoring and control, mining, communications, lighting, power quality and capacitors and environmental monitoring.

Fabrication Apprenticeship (Certificate III)
Based at Capital Projects at Tomago, our Electrician & Fabrication Apprentices work on the manufacture of a range of electrical power equipment, to drive critical projects across mining, renewables, utilities, and infrastructure.

Applications have now close for the 2022 Apprenticeship Program, to be the first to hear about future intakes, join our talent community.

Ampcontrol Supports SES Unit with Sandbag Filler Donation

The back-breaking work of filling sandbags has just become safer and more effective for members of Port Stephens SES thanks to a donation from Ampcontrol.

Fabricated at Ampcontrol’s machining workshops in Tomago, the three metal sandbag fillers were a designed by Ampcontrol team members. The donations were kindly received by the Raymond Terrace-based SES unit supported by Port Stephens MP Kate Washington.

In the aftermath of the recent floods, Ms Washington contacted David Douglas, Port Stephens SES unit controller, to see if they needed any support. His response without hesitation was for the steel-framed devices used to fill sand bags at speed.

“Shovelling sand into hessian bags one-by-one is back-breaking work, and our local SES volunteers were run off their feet. So I contacted Wayne Diemar [Product Manager at Ampcontrol], sent them a photo and asked if they could assist. Shortly afterwards, Ampcontrol had constructed three of the sandbag devices and donated them for free,” Ms Washington said.

“Ampcontrol is a great local business and a significant local employer. I’m so appreciative of their support and generosity, and I know how grateful our SES volunteers are, too,” Ms Washington concluded.

Mr Diemar said that the units, which could hold up to 10kg of sand, were easier to use by SES members and members of the public.

“The sandbag fillers enable SES members to bag the sand more efficiently and free up personnel in emergency situations as with instructions (SOP) the general public could come along again to bag themselves in emergency situations. Not to forget the ability for them to throw them in the back of a ute and get them to the needed locations quicker,” Mr Diemar said.

Mr Douglas said the devices were a welcome addition, allowing members to work more efficiently in a safer environment.

“They also provide a quicker response time which is important in times of flood. We can even set up sand bagging points at places such as Hinton in times of predicted heavy rains and flash flooding,” he said.

“We are greatly appreciative of all donations and would like to thank both Ampcontrol and Ms Washington for their assistance in helping us meet our challenges in times of floods,” Mr Douglas concluded.

Follow the link to read the article in the Port Stephens Examiner.

Ampcontrol Supports Academic Scholarship Program

Ampcontrol is proud to support the academic journey of local students once again through the Port Stephens Mayoral Academic Scholarship Program. This is the fourth consecutive year that Ampcontrol has contributed to the program, helping students looking to enter into a STEM based career.

The 2021 Ampcontrol Academic Scholarship was awarded to Lewis Limana who graduated with firsts in Business Studies and Economics. The $2,000 scholarship, presented by Ampcontrol’s CEO & Managing Director Rod Henderson, will help offset the costs of studying as Lewis embarks on his first year of a Bachelor of Renewable Energy Engineering (Hons) at the University of Newcastle.

Lewis is interested in renewable energy and the impact of global warming and would like to be part of the solution to address greenhouse gas emissions in a timely manner.

A sponsor of the Program for the past four years, Rod Henderson said, “these scholarships provide students in our local community with access to the best higher education opportunities and we are excited to support and follow Lewis through his studies in renewable energy.”

The Port Stephens Mayoral Academic Scholarship Program is an annual partnership between Port Stephens Council and local businesses to support the next generation of local business and industry leaders as they embark on their tertiary study.

2021 was a record year for the Program, with $40,000 worth of scholarships shared by 20 local students to boost their education. A full list of scholarship winners can be found HERE.

Ampcontrol Recognised with Innovation Accolade

Ampcontrol has been recognised for developing a fully functional emergency ventilator to assist with the NSW Government COVID-19 response, having been awarded the ‘Excellence in Innovation’ accolade during Friday evenings Lake Macquarie Business Excellence Awards.

We designed and developed the ventilator in consultation with the NSW Government and project partners NSW Health, Safearth, NewieVentures, University of Newcastle and the John Hunter Hospital.

The emergency ventilator was developed in response to the NSW Government ‘call-to-arms’ in March 2020 with our dedicated research & development team successfully delivering an initial functional prototype for testing at the John Hunter Hospital in just 18 days.

The following three months saw the project team further refine the prototype before manufacturing ten pre-production ventilators for further clinical testing and submission to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). The pre-production units were officially unveiled by the NSW Premier The Hon. Gladys Berejiklian on 9th September 2020.

Lake Macquarie Mayor, Cr Kay Fraser congratulated Ampcontrol and all 13 category winners and finalists who have excelled this year, despite the impacts of COVID-19.

“Never before has our business community had to adjust so rapidly to change because of COVID-19 restrictions. It has been really difficult for many businesses across our city, but these awards have been a chance to celebrate the successes and resilience shown by our local businesses,” Cr Fraser said.

Accepting the award during a virtual ceremony, Ampcontrol Executive General Manager Innovation & Service Warwick Sommer said partnerships and collaboration have been essential to the project’s success.

“The Ventilator Innovation Project is a true partnership in action. Tackling a challenge of this size was only made possible through collaboration with local businesses, clinicians, university, and Government.

To turn a concept into a fully functional life-saving piece of medical equipment within such a critical timeframe is a testament to our region’s skilled expertise and highly advanced capability to produce innovative solutions and products that make a difference to people’s lives.”

“We have an amazing business community in Lake Mac epitomised by organisations like Ampcontrol, so it has been wonderful to be able to provide some positive recognition and congratulate them on their achievements this year. I congratulate all our finalists and award winners and I encourage our community to get behind local business and show your support where you can,” added Cr Fraser.

Following success in the Lake Macquarie Business Excellence Awards, we will now progress to the Hunter Business Awards to be held on Friday 20th November, 2020.