The contributions of the late industrialist and philanthropist Sir William Tyree to UNSW have been many and valued, especially in energy.Dean of UNSW Engineering - Professor Mark Hoffman

Sir William recognised that society is the centre of engineering, because it is a profession that serves society by creating real-life solutions, using technology, design and team-work. His generosity made possible the Tyree Energy Technologies Building, a hub of energy innovation in Australia.

In this state-of-the-art building, UNSW Engineering students develop new and better ways to bring clean energy, water and sanitation to remote areas in Australia and the Asia Pacific; or work with industrial partners to push renewable energy technologies to greater efficiencies and create new, more versatile and cost- effective applications.

And his impact continues through the multi-faceted support the Faculty receives from his son, Dr Peter Tyree, chair of the Deans Advisory Council .  Take the Tyree Microgrid project , which aims to improve the lives of indigenous Australians in remote communities, profiled here. Funded by the philanthropic powerhouse created by Sir William, the Tyree Foundation, this $3.5 million, three-year initiative aims to vastly improve power transmission to rural users. It is led by Professor Joe Dong, a national expert in smart grids at the UNSW School of Electrical Engineering and Telecommunications.

Microgrids are small-scale electricity supply networks that intelligently switch between a mix of power sources, like solar photovoltaic cells, wind turbines, battery storage and diesel generators. Even for areas already connected to a national transmission network, they provide better reliability, flexibility and cost benefits.

It is but one example of what UNSW Engineering can achieve with the passion of its students and researchers, and the support of its valued partners, to make the world a better place.

At the core of our success are our students. We nurture, educate and inspire more engineering students than any other university in Australia; this year, more than 16,000. We encourage them to aim high, to see challenges as the pathway to innovation. And we strive to instil an entrepreneurial mindset that emboldens students to think globally, and harness their creativity and initiative to create solutions.

They come to UNSW Engineering because it provides the greatest breadth of learning and expertise, and because it is a powerhouse of innovation in Australia and the region. Which is why we attract more research funding than any other Australian university, and more companies partner with us than any other.

It’s a virtuous circle, and it delivers benefits to all: to society, and to students.

Mark Hoffman
Dean of Engineering