Head of Water Sector
Head of Water Sector
Head of Water Sector
I head up the Water Sector at TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory. I have worked at the company since 2019, having originally joined as Head of Single Phase Flow Measurement. I am currently expanding TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory's role within the water industry. This involves the development of a global Joint Industry Project looking at improving the measurement uncertainty of Large Diameter Flow meters within the water industry. Delivering webinars about topics such as How Can Digital Analytics Support the Water Industry by Detecting and Predicting Leaks? is also part of my role.
I undertook a Mineral Engineering Degree at Leeds University followed by a PhD looking at the use of ceramics to determine the levels of phosphorus in molten steel using electrochemistry. My first job after my PhD was at a contract research organisation, undertaking research for third party companies. Whilst at this company I worked in a range of fields ranging from oil and gas to water. One of my most unusual experiences was undertaking a mixing study on an abattoir digester on the Isle of Man. I was then involved in product development, mainly looking at separation and jet pumps for the oil and gas industry. In this role I developed a bulk oil/water separator and made my first contact with TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory. We were looking for large scale facilities to test the separator and undertook a large amount of testing on the low-pressure multiphase rig at their facilities. I returned to BHR Group undertaking contract research and became a technical sales engineer, where I would determine a client’s requirements and then design a test facility and test program to give them the information they required. In 2019 I joined TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory as Head of Single Phase and now I’m Head of Water Sector.
After working with TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory as a customer, I was profoundly impressed with their test facilities. I had worked on some quite large facilities in the past, including working with Statoil at Porsgrunn in Norway, when developing the bulk oil/water separator. I relished the idea of potentially being involved in research using the large complex facilities that I knew TÜV SÜD had in their laboratories.
I currently work from home in Hamilton.
At school I especially enjoyed mathematics, chemistry and physics, and was planning on undertaking a degree in Chemical Engineering. However, prior to choosing my university subject, my college chemistry teacher, a Leeds University alumni, highlighted a course on Mineral Engineering that was being held at Leeds University. Out of my whole chemistry class, two students were chosen to attend, and I was one of them. The course really interested me and had the right blend of chemistry and engineering. I was hooked. I immediately applied to the course to undertake the degree.
I have 24 years’ experience with fluid engineering research and development and product development mainly in the oil and gas and water industries. During my career I have held various roles including Project Engineer, Project Manager, Head of Research, Technical Sales Engineer and currently, Head of Water Sector. However, all of my roles have focused on fluid engineering.
My main role is to increase the business that TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory undertakes for the water industry. We are looking at how our digital services team can use the skills developed in the oil and gas industry and transfer these to the water industry.
I enjoy the fact that although I trained as an engineer, I am now expanding my skill set to sales and business development. Trying to increase TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory’s footprint within the water industry is a challenging but enjoyable role that I never thought I would have the opportunity to undertake.
Over the years the value of water as a product has been relatively inexpensive so accurate knowledge of the flow wasn’t really necessary. With the impact of climate change and the expected population increase, the available volumes of freshwater are going to become increasingly stretched. Water is going to become a more expensive commodity. Therefore, the water industry needs to pay more attention to the measurement uncertainties they have with their meters, and how they measure their flows.
Water companies also drastically need to reduce leakage. I hope TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory’s work to develop digital science tools for the water industry will help in locating and predicting leakage in water main networks. I am currently working with the digital team to try and bring the experience they have developed in the oil and gas industry and transfer this to the water industry. The advance of digital tools and machine learning offers a range of industries a huge benefit in being able to better understand their processes.
I think the use of digital science tools will offer a great benefit to the water industry. We have just started to realise how effective and important these tools will be in the future operation of water networks and in helping to identify and reduce leakage for ageing existing water networks.
Currently, my biggest challenge is trying to get the water industry to recognise the excellence of TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory. We are more than just a flow meter calibration company. Our excellent test facilities allow full-scale testing to be undertaken with a range of fluids, and I think we need to try and look towards the product development market and help third party companies with their product development. After all, this is how I originally came to know about TÜV SÜD National Engineering Laboratory.
We can combine our physical testing with our expertise in CFD modelling to allow us to develop fully validated design models that will be a massive help to product development engineers. If we’d have been able to combine physical testing of the oil water separator together with CFD modelling this would have been a massive help in design of my oil/water separator.
Hard-working, conscientious, intelligent, analytical and enthusiastic.
Go for it. TÜV SÜD is an excellent company to work for.