The ABC reports that the rare minerals we need to make electric cars are currently six times greater than traditional petrol cars.We spoke to Scientia Lecturer, Yu Jing from the School of Minerals and Energy Resources Engineering at UNSW Sydney, and asked her about the role energy engineers will play in the future, and why she chose to be part of this cutting-edge industry. Yu’s research characterises the subsurface of formation rocks to gain insight into underground fluid flow behaviours, such as natural gas, oil and groundwater. She is also an associate editor of the Journal of Energy Engineering and a member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM). 

Why did you choose a career in engineering, and more specifically, what led you to minerals and energy resources engineering? 

I chose engineering because most of the problems in the world are solved by engineers. At the School of Minerals and Energy Engineering you will find our disciplines very interesting, you learn about earth resources, such as minerals, fossil fuels, and geothermal energy. These resources have powered the world for centuries and are still the primary energy sources. 

Charging Port of an Electric Vehicle Charging Port of an Electric Vehicle
How are minerals and energy resources engineers shaping the future?

For the future of our energy supply, minerals and energy resources engineers will play an increasingly important role.  For example, in supplying key battery minerals, such as lithium, copper, cobalt, nickel etc.

In addition, this discipline will give students the most relevant and essential knowledge and skillsets for solving problems in projects about underground storage of carbon dioxide and hydrogen. These projects are key players in the global target of net zero emissions.

To learn more about storing carbon in the Earth watch this short video with Yu Jing. 

What advice do you have for high school girls considering this type of engineering?

Minerals and Energy Resources Engineering at UNSW is ranked top 4 in the world by QS World University Rankings. If you want to have a career in the recourses sector and make a difference in our sustainable energy future, then minerals and energy resources engineering is undoubtedly the right choice for you! 
Find out more about the Energy and Resources study area at UNSW Sydney.

Headshot of Yu Jung Headshot of Yu Jung