ExxonMobil Australia was a proud sponsor of the 2018 Awards, which recognise and celebrate the achievements of the Western Australian science community. Award recipients exemplify the outstanding scientific research and engagement taking place in the State. The awards cover all fields of science, including natural, medical, applied and technological science, engineering and mathematics.
This year, there were joint-winners in the ExxonMobil Student Scientist of the Year award category:
Mr Arman Siahvashi
PhD Candidate (The University of Western Australia)
Mr Siahvashi is in the final year of a PhD in natural gas process engineering. He has developed an innovative apparatus to visually measure the freezing temperatures of hydrocarbons at cryogenic temperatures. This data is crucial to solve the issue of shutdowns due to blockages caused by the freeze-out of impurities, which is a major problem facing the liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry. Mr Siahvashi’s method of measuring data has been endorsed by NASA due to its relevance to NASA’s study on the weathering processes of Saturn’s moon, Titan.
Mr Ryan Urquhart
PhD Candidate (Curtin University)
Mr Urquhart’s research into the Universe’s fastest feeding black holes has achieved important new insights into how they extract energy from in-falling matter and inject it into their surroundings. As well as discovering new black holes outside our own galaxy, his work has changed how astronomers view rapidly feeding black holes and helped to better understand how they recycle energy, a problem fundamentally linked to galaxy evolution. Mr Urquhart is actively involved with science outreach within Western Australia through regular engagement with primary and high school students, and mentoring undergraduate students.
Their awards were presented by ExxonMobil Australia Joint Interest Manager John McCann.
“The outstanding achievements of these two young scientists demonstrates the extraordinary technical talent we have in this country,” he said.
“All science and technology-based companies, like ExxonMobil, rely heavily on this talent to provide a continuous flow of new ideas to help us overcome the complex technical challenges we face in our day-to-day businesses.
“The quality of young scientists like Arman and Ryan – and all the Premier’s Science Award winners – gives us every reason to be optimistic about the future.”
For more information, visit the Premier’s Science Awards website.