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Collaborative project yields “world-first” geotechnical sensor

Manufacturing News

A project between Geoinventions Consulting Services and Griffith University has yielded a multi-function connected sensor for geotechnical monitoring, which has been patented ahead of production on Queensland’s Gold Coast.

The new product “revolutionise traditional geotechnical monitoring,” said David Chuter, Managing Director of the Innovative Manufacturing CRC, which sponsored the collaborative project through its activate program.

The sensor was described in a statement on Tuesday as robust, energy-efficient, and using micro-electro-mechanical systems (MES) chips. It would enable better monitoring of roadways, according to the team behind it.

Barry Kok, Geoinventions’ Operations Director, said the customisable sensor “does the job of two devices traditionally used in soft-soil engineering.

“Moving forward, we will continue to collaborate with other Australian manufacturers to provide an end-to-end geotechnical solution, taking in feedback to continuously improve both the sensor and production process.”

“Our partnership has delivered a MEMS sensor manufacturing technique that has a significant advantage over conventional methods. It’s capable of delivering many sensors on one silicon wafer, reducing the manufacturing time, cost and size of the device,” added Griffith University’s Professor Dzung Dao.

“In addition, the unique design and use of silicon carbide material ensure the sensor can withstand the harsh underground environments at the sites where it will be embedded. We look forward to further refining the sensor design with Geoinventions in the coming year.”

The project was announced in March 2022, with a budget of $420,000.

Geoinventions describes itself as a boutique geotechnical engineering consultancy providing engineering and specialist technical services to Australian civil, mining and building Industries.

Picture: supplied

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