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Research conducted at the School of Mechanical Engineering has resulted in the development of many new innovations, some of which are listed below.

  • Air-Conditioning
    Dadanco Active Chilled Beam

    Active Chilled Beams

    A novel method of providing entrained air-cooling was developed at the University of Adelaide to address acoustic noise and cooling capacity problems in perimeter air conditioning systems. The technology was patented and incorporated into active chilled beam products. The company Dadanco was formed in 1995 that manufactures these products and provides analysis and testing services.

  • Robotics
    Robotic Hand

    Robotic Hand

    A robotic hand, with very few moving parts, has been developed and patented by the School of Mechanical Engineering. A video of the hand operating can be seen on YouTube.

    Please contact Professor Colin Hansen for more information.

    Micro-Motion Stage

    A 3-axis micro-motion stage, which is designed for the positioning of samples in a Scanning-Electron-Microscope (SEM) has been developed.

    Please contact Dr Tien-Fu Lu for more information.


    Hexapod Robot Control System for Biomechanics Testing

    A novel design of a Hexapod Robot is underway at the School of Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics, Flinders University and the School of Mechanical Engineering, University of Adelaide, to enable complex 6 DOF testing of bones, joints, soft tissues, artificial joints and other medical/surgical devices.

    Please contact Professor Benjamain Cazzolato for more information.

  • Acoustics, Vibration and Control
    Digital Acoustic Energy Density Probe

    Digital Acoustic Energy Density Probe

    The probe permits the measurement of acoustic energy density and was built using digital signal processing chips.

    Please contact Professor Benjamain Cazzolato for more information.

    Engineering Noise Control Software

    This software enables consultants and students to quickly perform common engineering noise control calculations.

    Please see Causal Systems for more information.

    EZ-ANC2 active noise and vibration controller

    Active Noise and Vibration Controller

    The Acoustics Vibration and Control group have developed several active noise and vibration controllers that are available for sale. These include the EZ-KIT lite, EZ-ANC, EZ-ANC2. A next generation controller is currently in development.

    Please see Causal Systems site for more information.

    Adaptive Tuned Vibration Neutralizer

    Adaptive Tuned Vibration Neutraliser

    An adaptive tuned vibration neutraliser (also known as a damper) was developed as part of a DSTO Capability Technology Demonstrator project. The technology is capable of automatically tracking two independent frequencies and provides significant vibration attenuation. The technology was demonstrated on a Collin Class submarine engine vibration isolator.

    Please contact Associate Professor Carl Howard if you are interested in utilising this technology for your application.

    Adaptive Quarter Wavelength Tube Silencer

    Adaptive Quarter Wavelength Tube Silencer

    An adaptive quarter-wavelength tube silencer was developed as part of a DSTO Capability Technology Demonstrator project. The silencer was demonstrated on the exhaust of large diesel engine, and capable of automatically adapting to changes in engine speed, engine load, and exhaust gas temperature. The device withstands continuous operation of (dirty) diesel exhaust at temperatures over 500C.

    Please contact Associate Professor Carl Howard if you are interested in utilising this technology for your application.

  • Combustion
    Olympic Torch

    Olympic Torch

    The Centre for Energy Technology (CET) developed the burner that was used in the torches for the Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004 Olympic Games and Doha 2006 Asian Games. As a result of significant research and development, the CET came up with a unique burner, known as the "crinkle burner", which has since been patented.

    Please contact Associate Professor Richard Kelso for more information.

    Olympic Torch

    Ceremonial Flame Technology

    The facilities and personnel at the Centre for Energy Technology have contributed to developing the technology behind some of the most watched man-made flames in history by adapting the technology developed for the Olympic Torch as other novel devices for ceremonial flames. Projects include:

    • Sydney 2000 Olympic Cauldron
    • Athens 2004 Olympic Cauldron
    • Rings of Fire effect, 2004 Athens Olympic Games.
    • Doha 2006 Sports City tower cauldron (at 22MW, amongst the largest flame of its type ever)
    • A 2MW Line of Fire and a 1.6MW Ring of Fire for the Wagner Ring Cycle (Adelaide Festival Theatre)

    Please contact Dr Jordan Parham for more information.

    Power Station Cooling Towers

    Coal dewatering Technology Using Mechanical Thermal Expression

    The research conducted in Adelaide on behalf of the CRC for Clean Power from Lignite developed new coal dewatering technology using Mechanical Thermal Expression (MTE). This has the potential to significantly increase the thermal efficiency of brown coal-fired power stations.

    Research included characterising the reactivity of the char produced by the dewatered coal under typical boiler combustion conditions and developing new boiler mathematical models. The commercial impact of this work can be judged by the fact that a 15 t/h coal dewatering plant is currently being constructed at Loy Yang Power Station, Victoria.

    Please contact Professor Graham ‘Gus’ Nathan for more information.

    Laser Imaging of Fluid Flow

    Aerodynamic Pre-filter Technology

    The CET group provided the under-pinning research for the aerodynamic aspects of the agglomerator and pre-filter devices of industry partner Indigo Technologies. These devices can achieve a reduction in fine particle emissions by 60% for 10 micron particles, to 90% reduction for the important range of PM2.5 particles (smaller than 2.5 microns) when installed upstream from electrostatic precipitators from coal fired power stations. These devices can also achieve an 80% reduction in capture by sorbents of gaseous pollutants such as mercury.

    Gyrotherm Burner

    GyroTherm Burner

    The CET group is the originator of, and remains the leading research group in, Precessing and Oscillating Jet “Gyro-Therm” Burner technology, commercialised by industrial partner FCT-Combustion. In rotary kilns within the cement and lime sector, these technologies typically provide a 50% reduction in NOx emissions while also increasing radiant heat transfer and translating the heat-flux profile to the front of the flame. The combined value of these benefits easily exceeds US$1m in a large kiln through reduced fuel consumption, improved brick life and improved product quality.

    Please contact Professor Graham ‘Gus’ Nathan for more information.

School of Mechanical Engineering

Engineering South, L1


T: +61 8 8313 5460
F: +61 8 8313 4367