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Exawatt Altena

Joined 23 months ago from Melbourne

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I am a Senior Engineer in a utility which operates the infrastructure for the transmission and distribution of electricity. My role is to acquire and maintain systems that enable monitoring, control, and automation of the electricity grid in a safe manner.

T20 cricket at the senior level seems exciting but I find it more enjoyable when I see boys and girls I have coached having fun during junior tournaments – short enough to keep them interested but long enough to give everyone a chance.

I am a qualified electrical engineer with a Bachelor of Science (Engineering) degree and a Master’s Degree in International Business. My career started as a maintenance engineer with an elevator company, then a studio engineer at a television station, and for the past 23 years an electrical engineer in various utilities. I have worked in both developing and developed countries. The electricity transmission and distribution companies I have worked for include state owned vertically integrated, state owned deregulated organisations, and private corporations listed on the stock market.

My expertise is in the area of SCADA remotes and communication networks. Key experiences in my journey have included roles as an installation engineer - installed remote terminal units and established a SCADA control centre, design engineer - expanded SCADA systems, converted systems from proprietary based protocols to standard communication protocols, and developed new automation applications, power system control engineer - created operational instructions and updated safety guidelines to cover SCADA operation of the power system, project manager -  rolled out optical fibre networks, upgraded radio networks, and migrated RTUs to operate with new communication protocols. As a business analyst I have written business cases and provided project sponsorship.

The satisfaction I get from contributing to the availability of electricity everyday every time makes me get up every morning to get to work. My ability to understanding the work of generators, transmission service providers, distributors, retailers (in some countries), the challenges of environmental protection, and industry regulators is the key to my making a positive contribution to the industry.

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