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Manufacturing excellence award for carbon fibre wheel innovator

10 June 2016

Dr Ashley Denmead, Engineering and Design Director with Geelong-based Carbon Revolution, has been named the 2016 Victorian Young Manufacturer of the Year.

The annual award, presented by the Victorian government at a gala dinner on 9 June, recognises the contribution of young outstanding individuals in the Victorian manufacturing sector.

The award citation recognises Dr Denmead, pictured above right at the awards with Michael Silcock, Engineering Program Manager at Carbon Revolution, as one of the original inventors of the technology that led to the world’s first commercialised carbon fibre wheel and his contribution to the design of the product and manufacturing process.

Dr Denmead said the personal recognition was unexpected and he was “blown away” by the announcement.

“We have had a lot of success with the business which makes me feel fantastic but to receive a personal award is unexpected and I am flattered. It’s a team effort and I feel everyone deserves the award."

His current role in leading design and R&D at Carbon Revolution is focused on reducing costs and increasing manufacturing volume as well as designing the next generation carbon fibre technology.

“It has taken nine years to get where we are, and there is still a long way to go. We have big ambitions in terms of manufacture and volume and the technology. The opportunities for growth are enormous,” he said.

The award citation outlines the journey Ashley and his colleagues at Carbon Revolution have pursued to get to where they are today.

“During the final years of study in his mechanical engineering degree at Deakin University, Ashley was team leader and then chief engineer of the university’s Formula SAE-A program. This experience shaped his future – the competition, the people involved and the challenge it represented was the seed for his career direction,” says the citation.

“The drive to produce the highest performing F-SAE race car was the reason one piece carbon fibre wheels were conceived, evolved and manufactured within the team and its supporters.”

“Dr Denmead progressed his studies in the form of a PhD based around composite materials at the Centre for Materials and Fibre Innovation at Deakin University. In conjunction with these studies the development of carbon fibre wheels was progressed and Carbon Revolution was founded as a company in 2007.

“Now the Engineering and Design Director for Carbon Revolution, he has contributed to all aspects of the design of the product and process through the last eight years and has inventor status on all patents in the Carbon Revolution IP portfolio.”


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