Congratulations to Danial Nordinson and Matt Oka, Master of Engineering students, from the University of Melbourne’s Department of Infrastructure Engineering, who have received the 2015 Ronald L. East Prize for best project in water engineering from Engineers Australia’s Victoria Division.
The award recognises their research project into “Penetration of turbulence into a gravel bed: informing models of hyporheic exchange”.
The hyporheic zone is the porous region beneath and next to streams, where ground and surface water interact. Many organisms rely on the hydrological interactions that occur in this region, as this is where stream water is purified, nutrients are cycled and contaminants may be spread. Danial and Matt believe that their experiments on the turbulent characteristics of this zone will inform and improve the application of hyporheic exchange models.
The Sir L. Ronald East Prize was established in 1995 in honour of Sir L. Ronald East and to acknowledge the development of young engineers in the field of water engineering in Victoria. It is awarded annually on the basis of a review of a final year project and a presentation of research at an industry seminar.
Sir L. Ronald East was a Civil Engineer with the State River and Water Commission from 1922 to 1965. He was responsible for increasing Victoria’s water storage capacity by threefold, doubling the irrigated areas, improving flood protection and developing water supplies to towns. He held the role of River Murray Commissioner from 1936 to 1965.