Clunies Ross Awards

Clunies Ross Award winners 2011

Dr John Ness

Since 1980, Dr John Ness has made a significant contribution to the development of products and systems for the microwave and radio-frequency industry in Australia.

By developing new designs for components such as antennas, amplifiers and filers, the companies that John has helped to create have been able to develop communications links and radar systems that have been exported worldwide.

He was instrumental in the creation of MITEC, EMSolutions and Millatec; his legacy is the creation of a significant Australian industry.

One measure of John’s impact is the financial contribution of the products he has designed. Over its decade of independent operations, MITEC earned approximately $50 million in revenue.

Dr Nicholas Gough FTSE
Professor Antony Burgess FTSE
Professor Ashley Dunn

The Award is for their outstanding work in the purification, molecular cloning, commercialisation and clinical application of the blood cell growth factor GM-CSF. Their results have allowed rational intervention in major diseases such as leukaemia, arthritis and cancer. Clinical applications, protected by international patents, have created an ongoing royalty stream that continues to fund medical Research.

Dr John Clout

John Clout has made an outstanding personal contribution to the Australian iron ore industry.

Specifically, he was able to relate the blast furnace performance of direct charge Australian lump ores and the sintering performance of Australian fine iron ores to the numerous petrological features that characterise the wide range of different types of Australian iron ores.

He played a pivotal role in the identification and development of new resources, such that vast resources of previously ignored lower chemical-quality iron ore have been successfully commercialised to the eventual benefit of all Australians.

Dr Clout developed this understanding in his time at CSIRO Minerals (1992 – 2004) where he led a team of research mineralogists, geologists and metallurgical engineers.

In 2004, he joined Fortescue Metals Group and helped the firm to develop vast resources of previously ignored, lower quality Marra Mamba ore in the Chichester Ranges.

Mr Bruce Candy

As a result of 25 years of work by Bruce Halcro Candy, Australia, through Minelab Electronics Pty Ltd, is world leader in the provision of high-performance, affordable and practical hand-held metral detectors for the detection of landmines, gold nuggets and general coin, treasure and relic items.

Bruce has been personally responsible for the technological innovations which have resulted in metal detectors that are able to perform even in highly mineralised soils.

Minelab products are used in more than 100 countries and distributed through offices in Australia, the United States and Ireland.

Dr Roy Woodall

Roy Woodall was directly involved in an amazing number of the most important mineral discoveries in Australia during his career as a geologist with Western Mining Corporation between 1953 and 1995.

A number of these discoveries were entirely new types of ore body, which reflected his dedication to applying the best possible science to mineral exploration in Australia.

His first discovery was the Darling Ranges bauxite deposits near Perth in Western Australia in the 1950s. While bauxite was well known in the area, previous explorers had rejected it as uneconomic because of a high silica content.

This simple observation was the basis on which WMC with Alcoa was able to establish a multibillion-dollar alumina industry.

The site was found to be one of the great alumina sources in the world. Due to the bauxites being gibbsite rather than the boehmite, the vast deposits produce the lowest cost alumina in the world. The site has been in production now for many years and will be in production for many more years to come.

1966 saw Roy’s next discovery of nickel at Red Hill, which he subsequently renamed Kambalda.

Thanks to a series of seemingly inconsequential discoveries by amateur prospectors, Roy’s determination and support from key Western Mining Corporation executives Nickel sulphide deposits were discovered all through the country to the south of Kalgoorlie. They were then found well north, up towards Wiluna in the northern part of the goldfields.

The Kambalda nickel deposits were an entirely new type of ore and their discovery transformed WMC into a large mining company as a great new Australian industry was created.

In 1972, Roy discovered the Yeelirrie uranium deposit in WA, another new type of ore body. Development of this deposit never proceeded because in 1976 a team of WMC geoscientists under Roy’s leadership found a much larger copper‐uranium‐gold ore body at Olympic Dam in South Australia. This was also a unique deposit style.

The value of Roy’s legacy continues to grow. BHP Billiton is now planning to develop Yeelirrie, and of course is planning a massive expansion of Olympic Dam.

In addition, the many geologists that Roy recruited and mentored at WMC continue to make significant contributions of their own to Australia’s minerals industry.

During his career, Roy was offered many academic and industry positions around the world. However, he turned down all offers, partly because he had great respect for the people in charge of WMC, but most of all he wanted to find great ore bodies and create wealth for Australians.