Tag Archives: Adelaide

water software

Software saves rainwater

Featured image above: Stadium Australia in Sydney Olympic Park Credit: Tim Keegan

A dynamic software program utilising kinetic energy is helping buildings with large roof areas in Southeast Asia harvest and recycle rainwater.

Freshwater scarcity and wastage is a global environmental issue, leading to nations such as Malaysia to seek siphonic drainage solutions to help recycle the precious resource.

Researchers at the University of South Australia have developed a software package to help roof drainage companies construct highly effective systems across a range of major infrastructure.

The Adelaide-based university’s Pro-Vice Chancellor of the Division of Information Technology, Engineering and the Environment Simon Beecham said the dynamic program was the first in the world to follow rainfall through its entire cycle to ensure complete effectiveness.

Stadium Australia, which hosted the athletics and opening ceremony at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, was the first structure to utilise the technology.

“Now a number of large buildings in Southeast Asia are using this technology, like the airports in Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur. Malaysia has incorporated it into many of its shopping centres as well,” Beecham says.

“The buildings that were designed with the help of the software are able to harvest every single drop of water.”

The Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre in Malaysia, which hosts a number of large conferences, exhibitions, and concerts, is another big adopter of the technology.

The rainwater collected from the roofs is stored in large tanks and used to irrigate nearby fields or gardens. The recycled water is also used for the flushing of toilets to reduce the reliance on potable water.

Beecham partners with Australian drainage company Syfon to design state-of-the-art systems throughout Australasia.

His software allows Syfon to calculate the size of drainpipes and locate where hydraulic chambers need to be placed.

The company’s name is a play on siphonic systems, the method it uses to harvest rainwater.

Siphonic drainage systems convert open-air water mixtures into a pure water pressure system without any moving parts or electronics. Its hydraulic system allows the pipes to move large quantities of water very quickly.

Beecham says siphonic systems were used because the high pressures they created reduced the amount of additional energy required to pump water.

“Imagine if you had a pen in your hand and held it up and then dropped it to the floor. That’s an example of a solid object converting its potential energy into kinetic energy,” he says.

“Water can do the same thing. You get a very efficient drainage of your water where the pressure is so great it can even go uphill, and it also means you can run horizontal pipes for long distances.

“Its clever design of the hydraulics system creates a vacuum that sucks water in and converts the potential energy of rainfall into kinetic energy.”

This process allows large storage tanks to be placed away from the roof structure if more space is required.

Siphonic systems require a building of more than three stories to work and cannot be applied to residential homes.

-Caleb Radford 

This article was first published by The Lead South Australia on 4th May 2016. Read the original article here

schoolstar

Parents and schools connect

Developed by MGM Wireless Limited in Adelaide, South Australia, School Star is a secure mobile phone app that keeps parents in the loop about attendance, functions and other school news.

MGM Wireless invented the world’s first SMS based automated communication solution for schools in 2002.

Almost 1300 schools from around Australia use MGM’s communications system and half of them will be active users of the new School Star app within the next six months.

MGM Wireless CEO Mark Fortunatow said the company plans to take the app internationally after its success in Australia.

“We are formulating plans and strategies and hope to move in to the United States and Canada by the end of the calendar year,” he says.

“We also have partners and people in Shenzhen and Singapore that we have been working with for some time and have a network in place there already.”

School Star has a Facebook-styled news feed that can be regularly updated and is the only school app that allows direct two-way messaging between parents and schools with an SMS failover.

“Parents need a feedback loop. School Star does that and a number of other things that no other school app does,” Fortunatow says.

“Communication through other school apps gets to about 40% of the intended recipients at best.

“School Star will automatically send messages and content by SMS instead if parents run out of mobile data or don’t have access to Wi-Fi – so schools will reach almost 100% of parents.

“It is also unique because it promises a secure environment where only approved users can access school information.”

Schools install MGM’s content management system and enter in relevant news and information for parents.

Parents and students then register themselves using a secure two-factor verification process and once complete will allow users access to school information.

Only registered users from the current school database can use the school specific School Star app. It also allows the schools to ‘lock out’ unwanted users.

MGM ensures that sensitive information like names, photographs, dates, and places are kept secure at all times.

“Schools are loving School Star – they can publish news and send messages with a smooth interface and easy integration path,” Fortunatow says.

“News articles are easy to create, and parents love keeping in touch with what’s going on at the school.”

“School Star includes an engagement dashboard with state-of-the-art analytics so schools know which content is working best.”

School Star is available to download for free in the App Store and Google Play in Australia and will be available in the United States and Canada later this year.

– Caleb Radford

This article was first published by The Lead South Australia on 27th April 2016. Read the original article here.

HoloLense

HoloLens to revolutionise training

The Australian arm of global company Saab has partnered with Microsoft to build a range of ground-breaking training, education and other complex 3D Holographic applications for HoloLens.

Worn as goggles by users, Microsoft HoloLens is the first fully untethered, holographic computer, enabling interaction with high‑definition holograms.

Saab Australia, based in the South Australian capital Adelaide, is a defence, security and traffic management solutions provider specialising in computer based command and control systems.

Head of Training and Simulation Inger Lawes said the company had identified three initial markets: its traditional defence and security market, the enterprise market – primarily large corporations wanting bespoke applications to address a specific need – and internal applications for the company’s own development.

“A year or so ago we came across Microsoft’s work with holograms and specifically HoloLens and pretty quickly saw that this was a piece of technology that had the potential to revolutionise the way that training can be delivered but also a whole range of other things we are broadly involved in,” Lawes said.

“We want to produce applications that are at the sophisticated end of what HoloLens can do. For example there are a lot of games on this thing that are a lot of fun but that’s not where we want to be, we want to be at the upper end of what’s possible.”

Lawes said applications could range from training programs for school students and defence company employees to advanced assembly software for high-value manufacturers.

He said the company was initially focusing on internal training applications for HoloLens but would deliver an application for its first external customer in September.

“It’s pretty exciting because there’s nothing better than going from good ideas to actually fielding something in a relatively short time,” he said.

“We want to stay within our business of defence and security but we also want to explore applied markets such as using HoloLens to support sophisticated manufacturing.”

“We’re in such a great position with this technology because we really are in uncharted waters. We really don’t know what’s going to happen – we know it’s going to be fantastic but what direction we go we’ll see.”

Lawes said Microsoft had “gone out of its way” to help Saab establish a HoloLens studio in Adelaide and would provide the necessary hardware.

He said English language skills and an existing relationship with Microsoft made Saab Australia a logical choice.

“Microsoft are interested in helping us because Australia is a close friend of the United States, we speak English – everything that’s deployed on Hololens at the moment is in English – we’re able to work in the defence and security market and have developed a strong working relationship with their opposite numbers at Microsoft,” he said.

“Our plan is to set up globally in Adelaide. Our market then becomes near region but going into Europe on the back of our existing business relationships is also a real possibility.

“So when we are up and running this time next year we’ll be an export business as well as a domestic supplier.

“Every conversation we have with this technology reveals another good idea and for us it’s really exciting to be involved.”

– Andrew Spence

This article was first published by The Lead on 13 April 2016. Read the original article here.