A researcher at the Queensland University of Technology is developing a solar cooling and heating system for the home that will run independently of the electricity grid and generate domestic hot water as a by-product.

Paolo Corrada, a PhD student in QUT's Faculty of Science and Engineering said the system he has designed cuts energy consumption by 90 per cent.

"My target is to make it 100 per cent so that the system is self-sufficient to run off the main grid, costing the home owners nothing to run," Mr Corrada said.

The Australian Construction Industry Forum (ACIF) will bring together local construction industry leaders at briefings around Australia during October to outline the key issues affecting building and construction businesses, and present the forecasts for business over the next decade.

Discussion at the ACIF Briefings will be seeded with the latest release of the ACIF Forecasts, the industry’s rolling ten year forecasts of demand across residential and non-residential building plus engineering construction. This half-yearly update of the construction industry forecasts will be presented in a new and interactive format – concise, punchy and focussed on the main drivers of change ahead of a dynamic expert panel discussion on the key issues, plus addressing questions from the floor.

The South Australian Minister for Mineral Resources and Energy, Tom Koutsantonis, has announced the Parliament’s Public Works Committee has held a hearing into the proposed $38 million Mining Engineering Centre.

South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill has joined BAE Systems Australia Chief Executive David Allott in turning the first sod of the new advanced titanium manufacturing facility at Edinburgh Park.

The NSW Business Chamber has accused the State Government’s rail transport plan of jeopodising the future prospects of a High Speed Rail network in a recently released report.

Engineering and construction group URS Australia has announced the appointment of Geoff Pereira as the new Director of Capital Projects, with responsibility for overseeing mining and mine infrastructure projects for the company’s Western Australian operations.

The National Broadband Network Co (NBN Co) has confirmed the small South Australian town of Ceduna as the site of the next NBN satellite ground station.

The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) has announced the first round of skilled migrants invited to formally apply of visas under the Federal Government’s new SkillSelect service.

The Port Hedland Port Authority (PHPA) has completed its whole-of-port productivity and capacity utilisation review, identifying a number of areas for improvement.

A new report released by Infrastructure Partnerships Australia has called on Infrastructure NSW to release a strategy to provide a detailed, ambitious and long-term vision to protect and corridors and prioritise the right projects to ensure sustainable growth.

The Western Australian Government has released details of the Master plan for the new Perth stadium and surrounding sport and recreation precinct.

Mining giant BHP Billiton has announced it has elected to shelve the $30 billion expansion of its Olympic Dam expansion in South Australia.

GE has announced a $10 million funding initiative to help find, fund and bring to market technological innovations that help the company reduce its carbon footprint.

The New South Wales Government is calling for public submissions for its inquiry into insolvency in the construction industry.

BlueScope and Nippon Steel have confirmed the formation of a new joint venture (JV) with Nippon Steel Corporation (NSC) of Japan, forming the world’s second largest steelmaker following the completion of the venture.

The Queensland Government has held the first Moreton Bay Rail Link industry briefing, attracting over 300 business representatives to hear from State Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson.

The Port of Melbourne Corporation’s (PoMC) $1.6 billion redevelopment of its Webb Dock facilities has taken the next major step after the awarding of major civil and maritime design contracts.

The Queensland Crime and Misconduct Commission (CMC) has cleared the engineers who operated the Wivenhoe Dam during the Queensland floods of 2010 of any wrongdoing.

The Federal Government has announced the final stage of funding for the design and planning work for the Maldon to Dombarton Rail Link in a bid to have the project ‘shovel ready’ as soon as possible.

Steel giant BlueScope Steel is remaining positive despite announcing a $1 billion loss after tax this financial year.

The Western Australian Government has released the latest State Priority Occupation List, showing that engineers, nurses and childcare workers are among the most sought-after employees.

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