ABB Australia announces a five-year sponsorship agreement with the University of Queensland (UQ) valued at an estimated $500,000.
Students of the Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology will now have access to the ABB Mechatronics Teaching Laboratory, which is equipped complete with ABB’s System 800xA control system, IRB 120 industrial robot and drives packages.
As part of the agreement, the University will run courses each year with ABB guest lecturers, giving a minimum of 120 students the opportunity to gain first-hand experience with ABB's productivity enhancing and field-proven System 800xA and automation equipment in areas such as Control Engineering, Mine Ventilation and Mine Management.
One of the two ABB drives packages consists of ACS800 variable speed drives (VSD) and AC motors. Another combines ABB’s DCS800 VSD with a Baldor DC motor and gives students exposure to the energy efficiency capabilities of these devices as well as their application in reducing energy consumption in various mining operations.
ABB will also provide undergraduate scholarships for low socio-economic or indigenous students. ABB has committed to awarding a minimum of one three-year scholarship annually, which will give these students the opportunity to complete their higher learning at the University of Queensland.
The sponsorship program was launched at a special event attended by UQ Professors Graham Schaffer, David Mee, Peter Knights and Ross McAree, ABB country manager Axel Kuhr, and Regina Roos, BHP Billiton global account manager for ABB.
ABB country manager Axel Kuhr also announced that ABB will sponsor a number of full-time Research Higher Degree students with scholarships as well as paid internships over the lifetime of the sponsorship. These interns will receive wide exposure to different process and automation applications during their time with ABB.
Axel explained that ABB’s vision for this collaboration was to help the University develop industry-ready, highly skilled and globally focused graduates.
Executive Director of Mining Education Australia, and UQ’s School of Mechanical and Mining Professor Peter Knights said the association with ABB allowed UQ to collaborate with a world leader in power and automation technologies. He observed that the equipment donation to the laboratory will enable students to gain hands-on experience related to the design, construction and testing of their innovations.
ABB provides lifecycle services to a number of major resources clients in Queensland and interns could expect to work on essential solutions such as mine hoists, conveyor systems, control and electrification systems, and speciality engineering projects. ABB's other core offerings include electric motor refurbishment and the sale of high, medium and low voltage products.