Laboratory equipment a boost for engineering students

New equipment valued at $800,000 will ensure Charles Darwin University (CDU) in the Northern Territory will have one of the most comprehensive process engineering training facilities in the country.

The equipment will be used by undergraduate and postgraduate students and researchers working in the fields of minerals and oil and gas processing at the university’s North Australian Centre for Oil and Gas (NACOG).

NACOG deputy director Dr Daria Surovtseva said the 24-pieces of laboratory-scale equipment, including distillation and extraction columns, crystallisers and chemical reactors, would place CDU at the forefront of process and chemical engineering training in Australia.

“We are now able to educate students about the physics and chemistry behind mineral and oil and gas processing and which processes should be chosen in various situations,” Dr Surovtseva said.

“The equipment has been constructed from plastic or glass to allow for process visualisation. Understanding how to start up, shut down, monitor, troubleshoot and optimise processes will ensure our graduates are prepared for work in the mining, oil and gas industries.”

Some $300,000 worth of equipment was provided by Dow Chemical, while CDU has received support from the Northern Territory Government, INPEX, Total, Conoco Phillips and Eni for the NACOG facility.