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.

22kV Network System for Changi Airport

Voted as the world’s number one airport for the previous eight years, Singapore’s Changi Airport is undergoing significant expansions. To support this expansion, we were contracted to design, supply, deliver, install, test and commission a 22kV network system for the new Terminal T5. Once completed, the Terminal T5 will be one of the largest airport terminals in the world.

While the project included the deployment of many different Ampcontrol capabilities, a key aspect of the expansion was the development of a three-runway system and network of inter and intra terminal tunnels. As this was the first large diameter bored tunnel in Singapore, the power requirements were significantly larger than the previous projects completed in the country.

Our solution proposed a 22/22kV isolation transformer which was used to supply the tunnel boring machine to limit the secondary fault current to the system. This design and approach was both safer and more practical than using a 11kV system.

While mostly recognised for its Australian operations, Ampcontrol operates several successful operations in South East Asia which specialise in high voltage service and engineering support for the tunneling and infrastructure sectors.

Despite the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic the site supply was successfully powered on in October of 2021 and while the project is still ongoing, Ampcontrol is committed to suppling the highest quality products and services both in Australia and abroad.

Read the full case study below.

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Ampcontrol and LeoLabs $240m Aussie Space Radar Project

Ampcontrol has joined forces with LeoLabs Australia, in a Commonwealth grant through the Modern Manufacturing Initiative – Collaboration (MMI-C) to build world-leading space surveillance radars. If successful, the A$240M Aussie Space Radar Project (ASRP) will catapult Australia as a global leader in space surveillance and RF electronics export.

An estimated total investment of A$240M over three years, includes a direct A$160M investment by LeoLabs Inc and partners. The financial support under the MMI-C will provide A$80M investment in three Australian modern manufacturing innovations. This will include two new manufacturing facilities in Jerrabomberra and the Hunter Region, New South Wales, along with three high capacity advanced electronics production lines including one at SRX in Dandenong, Victoria.

The ASRP is notably the largest investment by a foreign company into Australia’s space industry in decades and represents a one-of-a-kind technology transfer, available only to Australia. It will enable LeoLabs’ Australia and partners to manufacture LeoLabs’ entire next-generation global space radar system, making Australia the sole global provider of LeoLabs’ high-tech radar modules to the world. The exquisite, next generation modular radar technology, which has been developed in Silicon Valley, incorporates the latest commercially available 5G systems, and truly transforms the way objects are tracked in space.

This exciting opportunity focuses on bringing together Australian businesses to manufacture the space radar systems, create new Australian manufacturing jobs and improve Australia’s sovereign surveillance capabilities. For Ampcontrol and ResTech, the collaboration provides the opportunity to extend electrical engineering expertise and ingenuity, develop new capabilities in space and defence technology, and construct a new production facility to build and test radar modules.


Watch the video from LeoLabs where key stakeholders speak on the partnership:

Read the full Media Release below

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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:

Ampcontrol energy solutions awarded multiple 2021 Hunter Manufacturing Awards

Ampcontrol has been awarded ‘Excellence in Product Design’ and ‘Collaboration Partnership’ at the 2021 Hunter Manufacturing Awards.

The Boundary Power Solar Cube, a rapidly deployable Stand-Alone Power System (SAPS) received the accolade for Excellence in Product Design. Ampcontrol’s collaboration with Steber International and The University of Newcastle to develop a hybrid diesel-electric boat was recognised in the ‘Collaboration Partnership’ category.

Excellence In Product Design
Rapidly deployable Stand-Alone Power System, Solar Cube

Boundary Power is a joint venture collaboration between Ampcontrol and Horizon Power. It combines both parties’ design, construction, deployment, and operations expertise to deliver a new, innovative series of stand-alone power system solutions to the market.

The Solar Cube solution is a self-sufficient power generation unit that incorporates solar photovoltaic panels, inverters, battery storage technology and a back-up generator, making it possible to replace traditional poles and wires networks with an off-grid, clean power solution.

A result of thoughtful engineering and manufacturing, the Solar Cube 90 minute rapid deployment methodology represents one of its most innovative features, differentiating it from other stand-alone power system solutions currently in the marketplace.

Commenting on the Excellence In Product Design win, Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO and Boundary Power Director Rod Henderson said, “We are absolutely thrilled for our Solar Cube to be recognised for its excellence in product design at the Hunter Manufacturing Awards.

At Ampcontrol, we have been designing and manufacturing innovative products for over 50 years that make a meaningful difference to people’s lives and communities worldwide. Through our partnership with Horizon Power, Boundary Power is designing evolving technologies and solutions that are leading Australia into renewable energy generation.”

Collaboration Partnership
Hybrid Diesel-Electric Boat

In an example of the immense benefits of industry, government and education uniting, a collaborative partnership between Ampcontrol, The University of Newcastle and Steber International developed a hybrid diesel-electric boat in late 2020.

Leaders in Australian boat manufacturing and industrial composite technology, Steber International approached Ampcontrol in 2018 requesting assistance to develop a prototype hybrid police boat. Ampcontrol’s leading technology and engineering expertise were applied to the project to leverage the silence of the electric power system, enabling a whisper-quiet mode for operations requiring some stealth.

Commenting on the second award win at the event, Henderson added, “The hybrid diesel-electric boat project is an excellent showcase of what can be enabled when you bring together the great minds, capabilities and ingenuity of university, industry and government bodies – and all done right here in Australia.

As the world adjusts to the global pandemic, it is fantastic to see a renewed focus on local manufacturing and a carbon reduced future; thank you to the Hunter Manufacturing Awards for continually championing our industry and region. We are honoured to receive these two acknowledgements together with Boundary Power, Horizon Power, Steber International and the University of Newcastle”, concluded Henderson.

For more information on Solar Cube and Boundary Power’s diverse range of stand-alone power system solutions, click here.

For more information on the collaborative partnership underpinning the design of a hybrid diesel-electric powered boat, click here.

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Ampcontrol Named One of Australia’s 100 Top Innovators

Ampcontrol is pleased to be named one of Australia’s 100 top innovators in a special publication released by The Australian. The inaugural list is compiled by The Australian alongside an advisory panel of experts and highlights the future-focused leaders, ingenuity and products that are set to make Australia an innovative nation.

At Ampcontrol, we’re committed to innovation by developing and implementing industry leading technology. This is achieved through engineering expertise, maintaining a strong commitment to R&D, and, most importantly, developing an in-depth understanding of our customers and industry requirements.

Acknowledgment within The Australian’s ‘100 Top Innovators’ listing follows the delivery of some of our recent innovative projects, including:

Strategic and Collaborative Partnership – LAVO:

The initiation of a strategic and collaborative partnership between Ampcontrol and Australian startup LAVO has successfully produced a domestic hydrogen battery that pioneers the next generation of green energy storage for commercial and residential use.

The LAVO hydrogen battery technology consists of an electrolysis system, fuel cell power, and hydrogen story array packed into one cabinet. The integrated hybrid system combines hydrogen and rooftop solar to deliver sustainable, reliable and renewable green energy to homes and businesses.

Stand-Alone Power System Joint Venture – Boundary Power

Ampcontrol joined forces with Australia’s leading utility in the deployment of Stand-Alone Power Systems (SAPS) Horizon Power to launch SAPS Joint Venture (JV), Boundary Power.

Boundary Power brings together Horizon Power and Ampcontrol’s combined SAPS design, construction, deployment and operation expertise, unveiling a new, innovative series of SAPS solutions to the market.

More recently, Ampcontrol and Boundary Power have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with LAVO to identify the use of LAVO’s hydrogen storage solutions and other zero-carbon products in different demonstration sites.

Battery Electric Vehicle Development

Ampcontrol has developed a battery-electric powered vehicle for underground mining applications, a solution borne from the need for more environmentally conscious solutions and safer, healthier working environments.

Designed to replace traditional diesel-powered vehicles, the electric-powered alternative enables mining operations to eliminate negative environmental impacts associated with the operation of diesel-powered equipment whilst simultaneously capturing additional operational efficiencies.

Additionally, Ampcontrol has just announced a new collaboration agreement with PPK Mining Equipment to deliver a range of new Battery-Electric Vehicle (BEV) solutions for underground mining applications.

The collaboration will see the installation of the latest world-class BEV technology designed by Ampcontrol into new PPKME personnel carrier vehicles. The companies will work together to also retrofit diesel drive trains in a range of other vehicles manufactured by PPKME, including the COALTRAM flameproof and explosion protected diesel Load Haul Dump utility vehicle.

Hybrid Diesel-Electric Boat Development

A collaborative partnership between Ampcontrol, The University of Newcastle and Steber International has conducted a series of highly successful bench and on-water trials of a hybrid diesel-electric boat prototype.

Leaders in Australian boat manufacturing and industrial composite technology, Steber International approached Ampcontrol in 2018 requesting assistance to develop a prototype hybrid police boat. Ampcontrol’s leading technology and engineering expertise were applied to leverage the silence of the electric power system to enable a whisper-quiet mode for operations requiring some stealth.

The hybrid diesel/electric propulsion system allows a boat to be power efficient, quiet and be significantly more emission friendly without suffering any loss of cruising range. The application of batteries and an electric motor facilitates a reduction in the size of the diesel engines required, while maintaining the same, or higher, power ratings for the vessel.



Catch Up On Our Entire ‘Asset Management’ Webinar Series

As Australia’s leading industrial electrical specialists, we provide continuity of technical support and a commitment to making sure your equipment delivers required outcomes, doesn’t breakdown, and is statutory compliant; which is why we launched the Ampcontrol Group Asset Management webinar series. These free, technical presentations designed for industry are now available on our YouTube channel.

The webinar series include presentations from experts across the Ampcontrol group including Philip Reilly, Peter Stepien, Hossein Rahimpour, Kaine Rathbone and Paul Karpathy:

Transformer Oil Analysis: Identification & Management of Abnormal Conditions’ – Philip Reilly, Ampcontrol Oil Services Consultant

The webinar talks about the use of transformer oil analysis, and how it is widely used for detecting abnormal conditions in insulating fluid-filled, high voltage electrical equipment in service.

Modelling Fault Scenarios to Minimise Asset Downtime’Dr Peter Stepien, ResTech Principal Engineer

In mining, various methods are available to identify potential faults in assets used for production. This presentation describes the modelling process with the use of practical examples.

Visibility and Understanding of the Condition of Critical Spares’ – Hossein Rahimpour, Verico Senior Electrical Engineer  

This webinar talks about why having visibility and an understanding of the condition of critical spares is an important element of good HV asset management practice.

Online Condition Monitoring of Coal Handling Plant (CHP) Machinery’ – Kaine Rathbone, Verico Mechanical Testing Manager

This webinar describes the challenges of condition monitoring of Coal Handling Plants and the Online Condition Monitoring solution Verico has developed to address these issues.

Making the Most of Your HV Asset Maintenance Program’ – Paul Karpathy, Ampcontrol HV Field Service Technical Officer

This webinar covers some of the common issues encountered with HV assets in the field and how to best manage equipment and infrastructure via scheduled maintenance programs.

Design and Manufacture of a 132kV Relocatable Switching Bay

Ampcontrol were recently contacted by a Queensland utility provider seeking a flexible power distribution solution to assist their service teams when responding to outages or conducting routine maintenance. Following consultation with the customer, Ampcontrol were selected to design and engineer a HV switching bay that could be easily relocated to provide HV support when and where required.

In what was a first of its kind project for both Ampcontrol and the customer, the team was tasked with designing and manufacturing a 132kV skid-mounted relocatable switching bay that will be initially deployed within a power station located in Central Queensland.

This relocatable switching bay will be utilised to divert power within the power station, allowing HV technicians to complete necessary maintenance works without interruption to supply.

In addition to the design and manufacture of the switching bay skids, the team was also tasked with developing a comprehensive training package. This included a face-to-face deployment demonstration session and the development of installation manuals whilst also providing ongoing operation and maintenance support.

To download a PDF copy of this case study, click here.


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.

Hong Kong Team Support Construction of Central Kowloon Route

Ampcontrol’s Hong Kong team has provided comprehensive HV and LV electrical distribution works on behalf of Bouygues Travaux Publics on the Central Kowloon Route (CKR) project. This important piece of infrastructure is a 4.7km, dual 3-lane trunk road linking the Yau Ma Tei interchange in West Kowloon with the road network servicing the Kai Tak development and Kowloon Bay in East Kowloon.

Ampcontrol supplied key HV and LV electrical distribution works and services which included:

  • Installation of a new and more environmentally friendly ring main unit due to its utilisation of green insulation air
  • Installation of a triangular dry type transformer rather than a traditional rectangular transformer. This solution has a smaller footprint and provides superior insulation resistance
  • Factory acceptance testing of a refurbished substation at Ampcontrol’s Tin Thui Wai workshop, ensuring the safety and efficiency of the equipment
  • 10km of HV and LV cable
  • HV testing and commissioning
  • 12 substations
  • HV switchgear

Successful delivery of the extensive HV and LV electrical distribution works expands Ampcontrol’s footprint within the CKR project. Ampcontrol has provided three Vacuum Circuit Breaker (VCB) panels, one 2MVA surface substation and one 1.25MVA tunnelling substation which are now in service on site.

Upon completion, the CKR project will form a trunk route through the heart of Kowloon, providing an alternate express route to relieve traffic congestion on the major east-west corridors. Ampcontrol have been contracted to provide a further 10 substations for service within the Central Kowloon Route project, for which work will continue into the foreseeable future.

To read the full PDF case study, download here.