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2001 A Spatial Odyssey
2000 Entries

In 2000 12 entries were received for the Australian Excellence in Surveying Awards.

At a special function hosted by the Institution and Consulting Surveyors Australia, held at the historic Adelaide Oval on 3 November the results of the Australian Excellence in Surveying Awards for 2000 were announced. Mr Warren Entsch MP, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Industry Science and Resources and the Institution's President Mr Malcolm McCoy presented the Awards to the deserving winners.

The entries demonstrated the wide range of projects that Surveyors are involved in, covering quality land development, environmental management, construction, resources, knowledge management, sculptures, business anaylsis and so on, and at this time when the Federal Government is facilitating development in the Spatial Information Industry shows the important role Surveyors will have to play.

The judging panel had the usual difficult job in those entries that were Highly Commended and the Winners in the three categories.

Pictured on right: The Winners of the Open Project Category from ALexander Symonds (L-R):
Mike Burdett (Alexander Symonds), Mr Warren Entsch MP, Martin Leaker (Alexander Symonds), Malcolm McCoy (President ISA)

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List of Entrants:

Open Project Category

Small Project Category

  • *WINNER* The "Geod" Project
    Dept of Civil, Surveying & Environmental Engineering - University of Newcastle

Student Project Category

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Open Project Category

*Highly Commended*
Knowledge Management for Privatisation of the Victorian Electricity Industry
Fisher Stewart Pty Ltd - Victoria

Fisher Stewart played a key role in the privatisation of the Victorian electricity industry providing sophisticated spatial data and land information related to the infrastructure and land tenure for the sale of Victoria’s power generation facilities valued at over $10 billion.

Fisher Stewart’s knowledge management perspective allowed crucial issues to be identified early in the project To address the complex range of land tenure, shared infrastructure and land management issues involving business and statutory stakeholders Fisher Stewart created an accurate spatial database integrated with local, legal and other specilaist information.

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The Body Zone is a special sculpture developed to showcase the human body, and is part of the Millennium Dome overlooking the River Thames in London. Alexander Symonds' role was to take a small clay model, determine the full size dimensions and then set it out on site.

While this may seem a simple task in itself, the project required real time 3D modelling of the construction to set out the supporting steel framework for the skin of the full size sculpture.

A high precision total station coupled to a laptop computer was chosen as the field equipment. This enabled real time comparison of any point in space to the design model. The high accuracy system virtually eliminated set out errors, allowing the survey team to achieve a high order of accuracy.

The project required not only technical innovation but also overcoming the problems in running a project on the other side of the world.



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Turf Management Systems - Colonial Stadium Melbourne
G Walkem & Co.

At new sporting venues such as the Colonial Stadium in Melbourne, maintenance of the playing surface is a major issue. In conjunction with the supplier of the modular grass surface for the stadium, Chris Watson and Graeme Walkem developed a management system, incorporating a GIS, traditional measurement systems and asset management. A specialised computer based survey positioning system was developed using ESRI ArcView GIS.

This computer system permits users to establish the location of grass modules, record their condition, identify critical elements such as pipes and valves. It also incorporates the ability to set out line marking for a number of sporting codes.

The Turf Management System has also been installed at a major sporting venue in the USA.

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The Dune Management Plan for Casuarina Beach 
Aspect North

The plan for Management of the Dunes at Casuarina Beach was prepared as part of the development of an area adjacent to the beach. The plan provides measures to rehabilitate native vegetation and safeguard the stability of the dunal system. The existing vegetation was mapped and classified, to identify native and introduced species. In addition the fauna in the area was identified and appropriate measures incoporated in the plan to ensure their protection.

The plan will be implemented over a period of five years, taking into account the issues such as removal of weeds, dune stability, control pedestrian and vehicle access to the dunes and manage and maintain restoration works in the long term. The plan demonstrates the close involvement of surveyors with management of the natural environment, ensuring there is a sustainable balance between development and the coastal strip.

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The Production of 1000 sq km's of Ortho LandInfo Rectified Imagery over Sydney 
Land Info - Sinclair Knight Merz

This project produced a series of ortho-rectified aerial images to be available "off the shelf" for projects and developments in Sydney. In total an area of 1000 km˛ of the Sydney basin has been covered. The result is 1 km˛ high resolution digital tiles, available as 24 bit geo-referenced TIFF, as well as hardcopy and available from the interent.

The product will be marketed under the name AUSIMAGE™. The production of AUSIMAGE™ has utilised all of the professional surveying skills such as surveying, photogrammetry, mapping, application development, image analysis, data management and project management. With over 600 ground control point, and a total dataset of over 90 GB the issues involving storage, retrieval and management of data are magnified significantly, and required innovative solutions to be developed

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An Innovative, Spatial Approach to Backlog Sewerage Design
Geocomp Consulting

When planning the development of any community the impact upon the environment is a critical issue. One of the main items that has to be taken into account is the disposal of sewage. In many developing countries the lack of a central sewerage system and the congestion in many urban areas makes the effective management of waste a difficult task.

Geocomp Consulting identified a need to produce a software and procedural solution capable of making significant improvements in the total process involved in providing cost effective sewerage systems.

The system integrates the sewerage design with digital topographic and cadastral data, together with the maximisation of associated aspatial data. The designers are able to incorporate design notes and digital images with the design data to assist with an efficient design process.

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Northside Storage Tunnel Project in Sydney 
Hard & Forester

Over the past two years a massive $451 million project to improve the quality of Sydney's waterways has been taking place below ground under Sydney's North Shore. The project involves the establishment of storage tunnels to hold any overflows of the sewerage system, to enable later processing of the sewage and prevent overflows into Sydney's waterways.

Hard & Forester as a sub-alliance partner of the North Shore Storage Tunnel Alliance was responsible for the survey control and data management of some 24 kilometres of tunnels.

The survey team guided the tunneling machinery, 24 hours a day. Special software was developed "ALPHANAV", to assist with the tunneling process, and is now being marketed worldwide. Working 7 days a week, 24 hours a day in a hostile and challenging environment demanded a high level of skill and management. As a testament to the skills of the survey team, over a 9.7 km section where the traverse could not be closed the misclose on breakthrough was only 55 mm

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Inneslake Estate Plan
Luke & Co Pty Ltd

The Inneslake Estate is a carefully planned residential development that will comprise of in excess of 2000 residential lots. What makes this project special is the manner of the planning and development.

It is the first fully planned and constructed, residential community in Port Macquarie that is mindful of and incorporates a safe and sustainable living environment for the residents and fauna. The result is a successful project that has been developed well ahead of its time.

The project incorporates residential lots, a golf course, country club, motel, shops, villas, tennis and equestrian centres, vineyard, winery, restaurant and adequate open spaces for walking and observing the natural environment.

The role of the Surveyors has been diverse, taking the project from initial briefs from the client to the finished product - which is a quality development by any measure.



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PNG - Qld Gas Pipeline Project
Mapping & Hydrographic Surveys

The PNG-Qld Gas Pipeline project is a $3.5 billion enterprise to deliver natural gas from the Southern Highlands in PNG across the Torres Straight to Australia. In 1999 a $2.2 million marine survey contract was let to Teknic Lengkap of Malaysia and Mapping & Hydrographic Surveys of Brisbane. The survey covered some 265 km of seabed, around a number of reef complexes.

Two specialist survey launches were used on the survey work, which included land based surveys for control.

The survey teams included nationals from PNG and the Torres Islands who were on board the vessels whilst the survey was being performed in their respective areas.



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Student Project

Suitability of GPS for On Time Running Analysis

Clint Joseph

Clint’s project involved the study of GPS with the DGPS service provided by AUSNAV to track the location of buses for TransAdelaide. The project examined practical issues as well as analysis of the movement of the buses to enable more detailed planning for the efficient use of the bus fleet

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Small Project

The "Geod" Project

Dept of Civil, Surveying & Environmental Engineering
University of Newcastle

With the introduction of the new Geocentric Datum of Australia and the associated Mapping grid, it raised the issues of

An initial need for education of the profession of surveying and, later, para-professionals and users of GPS equipment; the development of universally acceptable and proven software to perform transformations from one datum to another;

a mechanism to ensure ongoing education and training for new users of geodetic systems.

The staff involved with the teaching of Surveying at the University of Newcastle corporately decided to tackle these tasks, through putting in place

  • An interactive and animated PC-based tutorial package of the style which these staff have popularised in recent years has been produced to explain all aspects of geodetic datums and the transformation of coordinates between them.
  • A transformation program which allows single point or multiple files of coordinates to be transformed was commissioned and explanations of it incorporated into the tutorial.
  • Seminars have been held at various locations throughout New South Wales and the academic staff liaised closely with staff of the state and national bodies responsible for the coordination of a nation-wide education program for the introduction of GDA.

An animated tutorial program GEOD was developed, including the use of animated graphics were developed to illustrate all aspects of map projections, geodetic datums and the transformation of co-ordinates between them.

The GEOD tutorial had to bridge the gap between the rigorous definitions of geodetic concepts required for tertiary students and the level of three-dimensional coordinate knowledge of the world which the 'person-in-the-street' could be expected to readily comprehend. At the same time, the information presented had to be meaningful to practicing surveyors, and so a considerable amount of thought was put into the depth of detail to be shown on any topic area.

In the GEOD tutorial, concepts such as the Transverse Mercator co-ordinate system had to be explained so that non-experts could feel comfortable with using topographic maps and GPS units. The depiction of concepts such as the geoid and a geodetic datum presented considerable problems. Their shape and orientation had to be exaggerated in order to be visible on a global scale, yet the 'wrong message' about size should not be conveyed to laypersons.

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Would a GIS be a Viable Option for a Small Survey/Planning Business?
Annelise Peyton

This project was carried out to investigate whether a GIS would be a viable option for a Surveying/Planning business, taking into account factors such as the actual establishment costs, benefits and associated applications that would be involved in establishing a GIS.

Research was carried out within a Surveying/Planning practice to test the viability of GIS. One element considered was whether a GIS would provide a way of Surveyors to transfer their abundance of knowledge in the field into a new form.

The project concluded that there appears to be an over-emphasis on the cost of establishing a GIS within a business. While there is a set up costs it is anticipated that the funding would be returned to a business in a short period of time, provided appropriate training and maintenance was put in place. The biggest impediment appeared to be the mindset of Surveyors.

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