Deakin Professors announced as finalists in the Australian Museum Eureka Prizes

Media release

27 July 2022

Deakin University is proud to announce the nomination of two academic staff as finalists in the prestigious Australian Museum Eureka Prizes.

The 2022 awards recognise leaders in Research and Innovation, leadership, science engagement and school science.

Wildlife Ecology and Conservation Professor Euan Ritchie, from the School of Life and Environmental Sciences, is a finalist in the Celestino Eureka Prize for Promoting an Understanding of Science.

Professor Saeid Nahavandi, Director and Pro Vice-Chancellor Defence Technology at the Institute Intelligent Systems Research and Innovation, is a finalist in the ANSTO Innovative Use of Technology category, for his work in creating autonomous trucks for the Australian Army.

Both Professor Ritchie and Professor Nahavandi are well-recognised for their research and dedication in their respective fields.

In celebrating his nomination, Professor Ritchie said:

"In confronting the global crisis of biodiversity decline, extinction, and climate change, it's never been more important to communicate the power of science.

I care deeply about creating awareness, sharing the wonders of our remarkable species and ecosystems, and promoting a more sustainable future."

Professor Saeid Nahavandi pioneered the design, development, and implementation of the innovative Autonomy Pack system. Combining sensing technology, advanced robotics and AI, the Autonomy Pack can be retroactively fitted onto a range of heavy vehicles.

It offers a cost-effective, safe, and robust solution for vehicle automation across the mining, transport and defence industries.

"Our technology allows these vehicles to travel off-road, in far more complex, unstructured, rough terrain," said Professor Nahavandi. "The technology is vehicle agnostic, offering enormous capabilities."

Presented annually in partnership with some of the nation's leading scientific institutions, government organisation, universities and corporations, the Eureka Prizes raises the profile of science and science engagement in the community by celebrating outstanding achievement.

Since the prizes were established in 1990, close to 500 Eureka Prizes have been awarded.

The winners will be announced during a live broadcast event on Wednesday, August 31. Deakin wishes both Professor Ritchie and Professor Nahavandi the best of luck.

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Media release School of Life and Environmental Sciences Institute for Intelligent Systems Research and Innovation (IISRI)