Supporting innovative research and technology.

workers assembling and constructing gas turbines in a modern industrial factory

Our investment in major research infrastructure, equipment and facilities support our staff and students to work on innovative research and technology.

We are committed to providing a world-class learning experience by making the latest computer engineering software accessible to all our students.

Infrastructure laboratories

The Randwick Heavy Structures Laboratory and the Materials Research Laboratory and Geotechnical Engineering Laboratories support experimental research on various aspects of structural engineering. 

Our laboratories are equipped with state-of-the-art servo-controlled hydraulic actuators and universal testing machines to maintain a capacity for high load testing, ranging from 10 kN to 5000 kN. We combine strength testing with X-Ray measuring of laboratory specimens under load. This improves understanding at the materials level for the development of refined, mechanically based, structural models. 

Geotechnical engineering laboratories

The geotechnical engineering laboratories houses a range of conventional soil, rock and asphalt testing equipment.  

Some key features include: 

  • triaxial cells, pressure plates and an oedometer for testing unsaturated soils at normal and elevated temperatures 
  • rotating cylinder and a specialist pin-hole apparatus for testing erosion of soils 
  • ring shear apparatus, a large shear box and high pressure triaxial cells for testing gravel 
  • rock and sands undergoing particle crush testing 
  • asphalt testing laboratory. 

We’ve expanded our facilities to include a calibration chamber to conduct cone penetration tests in unsaturated soils as well as a high-performance thermal imaging camera to research progressive development of instability and failure in soil and rock samples. 

Surveying & geospatial engineering laboratories (SAGE Lab) 

The SAGE Lab supports our teaching and research capabilities in surveying and geospatial engineering. It has the latest surveying instruments and software to provide our experts to research survey practices, photogrammetry and remote sensing, precise and kinematic GNSS positioning and geospatial engineering.  

Visit the SAGE website for more information.

Satellite navigation & positioning laboratories (SNAP Lab)

The SNAP Lab is dedicated to research on wireless, ground-based and satellite-based positioning technology and applications. The Lab is a collaborative initiative between UNSW School of Civil and Environmental Engineering and UNSW School of Electrical Engineering and Telecommunication. It also combines our expertise in geodesy, surveying & geospatial science, with that of electronics, signal processing and space engineering from the Australian Centre for Space Engineering Research

Water quality laboratories

Our Water Quality Laboratories (WQL) contain a wide range of analytical instruments for the chemical, microbial and physical analysis of environmental samples from water, wastewater, waste and the atmosphere. 

These include specialist laboratories for chemical and microbial analysis, pilot hall facilities for large scale bioreactor studies, a radiation laboratory for isotope studies and an olfactory laboratory for odour characterisation. 

Our researchers also have access to: 

  • gas chromatograph coupled with a tandem mass spectrometer (GC-MS/MS) 
  • high pressure liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometer (HPLC-MS/MS) 
  • inductively coupled plasma-atomic emissions spectroscopy (ICP-AES) 
  • inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) 

UNSW Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre

Our students and staff have access to the facilities at the Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre including the DOC Labor Liquid Chromatography – Trace Organic Carbon Detector (LC-OCD). This is used for speciation and trace analysis of total carbon and nitrogen in water samples, such as drinking water, is available using the LC-OCD. 

For more information, visit the Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre

UNSW Odour Laboratory

The laboratory is a leading facility that specialises in interdisciplinary research and training for the assessment and management of odour and gaseous emissions. Researchers from the Lab collaborate with Government agencies, industry partners and utilities to provide specialist olfactory and chemical analysis for the characterisation of odorous and gaseous emissions. 

For more information, visit The Odour Lab

Water Research Laboratory (WRL)

Located in Manly Vale, the WRL has four large hydraulics laboratories for research and specialty consulting studies and is used for the construction of large-scale physical models.

For more information, visit the Water Research Laboratory.  

Travel Choice Simulation Laboratory (TRACSLab)

Our TRACSLab laboratory allows our researchers to study travel choice and inter-dependent behavioural characteristics by incorporating group interactions.  

For more information, visit the Travel Choice Simulation Laboratory.