Atlite bushfire skylight
A team led by Professor Blair Kuys, Director of Swinburne’s Centre for Design Innovation, has designed the first Australian skylight that is bushfire, hail, cyclone and leak resistant.
The innovation is a combination of a robust aluminium frame with two layers of glass, a strong outer double-glazed glass and an inner low emissivity (low-e) glass, which minimizes the amount of ultraviolet and infrared light (or radiant heat from a bushfire) that can pass through, without compromising visible light. The product has been tested for bushfire resistance at 900°C.
Swinburne researchers are developing a gold detector for the mining industry that uses muons, sub atomic particles created when cosmic rays hit Earth’s atmosphere. A 10cm x 10cm prototype, which will be scaled up for commercial use, contains a piece of plastic scintillator, which re-emits energy absorbed from ionizing radiation as light, explains Professor Alan Duffy, who is developing the detector with Deputy Director of the Factory of the Future Shanti Krishnan and Technical Officer Craig Webster.
The plastic glows slightly when hit by muons, says Duffy. Bespoke software then draws on astrophysics calculations to identify the muons’ trajectory and the impact of dense rock on this path. Underground detectors use this to create 3D tomography maps, revealing gold.