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Ship-shape research wins top prize

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Shaun Denehy’s research into the interaction between berthed and passing ships has been recognised with the best paper award at the 2015 Coasts and Ports Conference.

The biannual conference series is the pre-eminent forum in the Australasian region to discuss issues relating to coasts and ports. The PIANC Young Authors award is presented to a young professional who has authored and presented the best paper with a practical application for ports and harbours.

Mr Denehy, who is now in the mix for the same title at the international conference, said it was rewarding to have his research acknowledged by his peers on a national stage.

“I was very surprised that I won, I assumed only my supervisors actually read my papers. It was nice to have my research acknowledged for its practical applications,” he said.

“The conference this year had 160 delegates presenting their research. My paper discussed the experimental results of berthed ship-passing ship interaction conducted in the model test basin using the new rigid towing rig. The experimental results were used to validate computer modelling predictions.”

Mr Denehy is a research engineer working in AMC’s towing tank and model test basin facilities and a part-time PhD candidate. His research aims to develop new semi-empirical formulae to predict berthed ship-passing ship interaction in restricted waterways.

“After completing this project, I would like to continue working on restricted water manoeuvring research and commercial consultancies,” he said.

Also at the 2015 Coasts and Ports Conference, ocean engineering student Jasmin McInerney was awarded the Engineers Australia DN Foster prize. This award is designed to help final-year undergraduate engineering students attend the conference and consists of a $1000 travel and accommodation voucher.

Published on: 29 Sep 2015