Major Industrial Project Placement Scholarship (MIPPS) Scheme

The Major Industrial Project Placement Scholarship (MIPPS) Scheme has been successfully running since 2000. Its aim is to embed some of the top 25% of final year undergraduate and postgraduate coursework students for six months fulltime in leading companies (listed below are this year's placements and project summaries, and prior years). The projects the students undertake are of benefit to themselves, the company and the school's profile.

Typically the scheme has involved 10 to 15 students each year. Over 175 students have now been part of the MIPPS program with over 20 companies having participated in this scheme. Some of the companies involved this year have been with the program since the start, a testament to the value the companies see in the program. The companies have paid a small fee of $29,500 for the 2015 scheme, which covers the student scholarship and academic supervision fees. Overseas and interstate living costs are an extra cost to the host company. This year there are 3 overseas placements with Dow Chemical, a wonderful opportunity for our students to immerse themselves in other cultures and the workplace at the same time.

Participating companies value MIPPS for the outcomes of the projects and exposure to the top students. Many of these students are recruited by the participating company after graduation. It is a very good vehicle for the company to deepen its relationship with the School, Faculty and the University. MIPPS remains the premier undergraduate program in the School’s offerings for the foreseeable future.

For more information with regards to MIPPS please contact our MIPPS Coordinator:
Annette Karydis.
P: +61 2 9351 5019


  • AB Mauri Technology and Development Pty Ltd., North Ryde, NSW
  • BOC Ltd., North Ryde, NSW
  • Dow, Sadara, Saudi Arabia (3 students)
  • Dow Chemical Australia Ltd., Geelong, VIC
  • Dow Chemical Australia Ltd., Altona, VIC
  • Orora Limited, Matraville, NSW
  • Osaka Gas, Osaka City, Japan
  • Parkes Shire Council, Parkes, NSW
  • Sydney Water, Parramatta, NSW
  • Visy, Smithfield, NSW

Selected MIPPS 2016 Project Summaries

Project Title: Validation and Verification of Clean-in-Place Methods for Industrial Yeast Production

Company: AB Mauri

AB Mauri uses Clean-in-Place systems to remove carry-over contamination between batches. This project investigated if rapid microbiology monitoring tools could be used to validate and verify effective cleaning. The thesis presented AB Mauri with an increased understanding of the pitfalls in hygiene monitoring and justification for greater focus on hygienic design and maintenance.

Project Title: Scrubber System Performance Analysis and Process and Optimisation

Company: Dow Chemical Australia, Geelong

Dow Coating Materials produces a range of polymer emulsion products from acrylic monomers. A caustic scrubber at Geelong was installed in order to maintain safe levels of acrylic monomers in the atmosphere.

The project was to analyse the suitability of the scrubber for daily duty, both technically and operationally, and propose/implement solutions to improve required performance of scrubber.

Project Title: Improvements in the sugar pneumatic conveying system and bulk storage in the Propylene Oxide Derivates plant

Company: Dow Chemical Australia, Altona

Downtime can cost chemical plants hundreds of thousands each year in loss of production. Regardless of the industry, plant downtime means loss of revenue and higher operating costs.

The aims of this project are to identify the root cause(s) of unplanned downtime in the sugar system at the Dow Altona Polyol Plant, implement corrective actions and identify areas of improvement. The scope of this work also includes the development of a predictive preventive maintenance strategy for the sugar system.

Key corrective actions implemented in April 2016 have resulted in a 96% decrease in unplanned downtime of the sugar system and on average monthly reductions of $50,000 in loss of revenue.

Project Title: Sadara CHEM I Waste Water Compliance

Company: Dow

The project was based at The Sadara (JV between Dow Chemical and Saudi Aramco) Brine and Chlorine Production Plant (CHEM I facility) in Saudi Arabia. A comprehensive measurement plan was developed for The entire facility to validate The design model used to predict waste water compliance. Through this project, mitigation activity not requiring capital investment was also proposed to be implemented for minor non-compliance events. The aims of this project were to reduce The risk of Plant shut down and prevent revenue loss due to delays in schedule.

Project Title: The Dow Human Element at Work

Company: Dow

The Dow Chemical Company expatriated over 700 employees (predominantly engineers) to work on the Sadara megaproject in Saudi Arabia. This industrial research project investigated the critical motivational factors influencing the expatriates success and assessed the effectiveness of the expatriate management practices implemented by Dow. In-depth interviews with senior management and employee surveys were conducted to analyse the expatriate population's viewpoints. The work produced has provided detailed insights for Dow with implementable recommendations for future expatriate projects and improvements for the current Sadara project.

Project Title: Characterising Chlorine Decay in the Parkes-Peak Hill Scheme

Company: Parkes Shire Council

Parkes Shire Council treat and supply drinking water to more than 10,000 consumers in regional NSW. Maintaining a residual concentration of chlorine in treated water is essential to protect public health. This study involved investigating major causes of chlorine decay, developing a chlorine decay model and recommending strategies to improve residual retention across the scheme.

Project Title: Aeration Bypass for Anaerobically Treated Wastewater

Company: Visy, Smithfield

This project investigated the feasibility of bypassing the aeration process or substituting a chemical process to assist in maintaining low biological oxygen demand and suspended solids in pulp and paper mill wastewater. The aim was to find process alternatives with less financial cost and environmental impact on air, water, and land, while maintaining high quality effluent. The feasibility of recycling final effluent into the mill to reduce fresh water consumption was also evaluated.