Centre for Infrastructure and Mining Safety (CIPMS)

Mission statement

The CIP&MS aims to become an integrated interdisciplinary research centre that facilitates, coordinates and promotes innovative activities involving wide collaboration in the areas of infrastructure protection and mining safety. The CIP&MS will be a platform to which researchers from Civil and Mining disciplines of School of CMEA are able to collaborate in order to efficiently utilise the unique technical expertise and resources currently existing within the School of CMEA thus maximise our impact to industries. All activities and research-and-development conducted by the CIP&MS will have outcomes aimed at enhancing the image and standing of UOW as a leading research institution in line with the current UOW vision “to enrich people, communities and the environment by making original and creative connections across disciplinary, social and cultural boundaries”.

The School of Civil, Mining and Environmental Engineering (CME) at UoW is currently recognised for its highest level of research and contribution to the industry in the area of geotechnical engineering. At the same time, very significant expertise and industry involvements exist between Structural and Mining academic members in the area of infrastructure protection and mine safety that are not fully utilised and not recognised by the University as a strategic direction towards world-class standing of the School of CME. The proposed Centre for Infrastructure Protection and Mining Safety (CIP&MS ) will greatly enhance the School’s image by consolidating Structural and Mining academics and research staff to jointly work on research and applied industry-based projects and significantly improving our School’s reputation as a leading force nationally and internationally in the area of infrastructure protection and mining safety. The Centre will provide a vehicle for close collaboration and teamwork between Mining and Structural groups by facilitating the involvement of all Civil and Mining academics and research-only staff in research and industry projects using the high reputation of the Centre for attracting new funding sources and projects. The Centre will also play a significant role by complementing the current activities of the SMART Infrastructure Facility at UoW, where the safety of infrastructure is not currently recognised as the strategic direction. Infrastructure monitoring is however seen as an important growth area within CME and SMART building on the existing network of Continuous Real-Time Monitoring field stations being developed by Dr Flentje and his industry partners.

The three main research and expert groups within the CIPMS are: 

  1. Infrastructure Protection and Retrofitting Techniques,
  2. Mining Safety, and
  3. Landslides Risk Management and Protection

These groups will also collaborate on the projects of inter-disciplinary nature, such as structural-mining, seismic-mining, water engineering-mining, high-performance computing in civil-mining applications to provide cutting edge research and practical expertise of the CIPMS staff members.

The CIPMS will focus on the following areas of international research strength and high-level technical services:

  • Protection and retrofitting of buildings against effects of natural and man-made hazards,
  • Protection of mining operations against accidental loads,
  • Safety of railway infrastructure,
  • High-performance computing and modelling of effects of severe loads on critical infrastructure,
  • Demolitions of large structures in Civil and Mining industries.
  • Prevention of mining hazards associated with gas, dust, water and fire.

The Centre will be drawing expertise mainly from both academic and research staff in structural and mining engineering and industry. In the past five years CIP&MS staff have published over 250 peer-reviewed research papers and obtained over $5.0 million in research funding from the ARC, ACARP and industry. This places the CIP&MS at the forefront of international research in structural, protective and mining engineering.