SYDNEY-based LX Design House has developed a compact tracking device specifically for koalas and their environment.
The K-Tracker is one of 49 finalists in the 2014 Sydney Engineering Excellence Award, with winners to be announced on 19 September 2014.
According to LX Design House, the pendant-style K-Tracker is much less bulky than other electronic tracking devices, allowing the koalas to tuck their chins to their chests when they sleep, a natural behaviour.
The device provides high accuracy real-time data about the health and activity level of koalas, allowing research teams to monitor the health and behaviour of the koalas via a web interface. Researchers will also be able to detect behaviour modification induced by construction activities in their habitat. This will hopefully help counter the dramatic decrease in koala populations and genetic diversity in QLD and NSW.
Steve Finlay, General Manager Engineers Australia Sydney Division said the 2014 entries showcased the diversity of award finalists, all of whom are engineering solutions to common problems.
“We are proud to be recognising engineering feats which are contributing to environmental concerns. The K-Tracker is a robust, convenient and reliable system that addresses a unique and challenging set of requirements by our much loved native koalas.”