Electricity Commission of NSW

In the summer of 1982/83, in the long break between my first and second years at University, I worked for the Electricity Commission of NSW as a trainee electrical engineer at the Tamworth Regional Centre.

I could only find two photos from that time, that were included in the work placement report I had to write. Its interesting to note how much work safety standards have changed in 35 years.

Electricity Commission of NSW, 1983.

Electricity Commission of NSW, 1983.

Eraring Power Station

In the summer of 1983/84, in the long break between my 2nd and 3rd years at University, I worked at Eraring Power Station near Newcastle, as a trainee electrical engineer.

At this time some of the generating units were in production, and some still under construction.

Eraring Power Station, turbo-generator hall,1984.
Eraring Power Station, turbo-generator,1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, cable tunnel, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, furnace chamber, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, furnace chamber, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, furnace chamber, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, control room, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, control room, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, Control monitors, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, Control monitor, D Mill, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, Control monitor, E Mill Performance, 1984.
Cold Reheat Pipes, Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
ACW coolin towers, Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Deaerator, Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Secondary Superheater, Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Reheater Inlet Header, Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Eraring Power Station, 1984.
Primary Air Heater, Eraring Power Station, 1984.

Wallerawang Power Station

In the summer of 1985/86, in the long break between my 4th and 5th years at University, I worked at Wallerawang Power Station near Lithgow, as a trainee electrical engineer.

Wallerawang Power Station cooling tower. December 1985.
Inside the cooling tower at Wallerawang Power Station. January 1986.
Inside the cooling tower at Wallerawang Power Station. January 1986.
Boiler components,Wallerawang Power Station, February 1986.
Boiler wall repairs, Wallerawang Power Station, January 1986.
Inside the furnace chamber, Wallerawang Power Station, February 1986.
Wallerawang Power Station, December 1985.

Liddell Power Station

Not Liddell power station – ABC News gets it wrong. (Actually Bayswater.)

Liddell power station (near Muswellbrook NSW) has been in the news this week, with a bit of a public stoush between its owners AGL who intend to close the station in 2022, and Malcolm Turnbull who wants to keep it open for five years beyond that date.

One of the frustrating aspects of this has been how frequently the media shows a picture of a power station other than Liddell when reporting on Liddell.

I’m familiar with Liddell power station as I worked there as an electrical engineer from December 1986 to January 1988 in my first job  after graduating from university.  Since the media is incapable of showing pictures of Liddell, I thought I’d scan and post some of the photos I took while I worked there. It was an interesting time, as there was a lot of repair and remediation work going on, and I got to look inside a lot of equipment that would normally be unseen.

Liddell power station 1987.
Turbine blades
Turbine blades
Turbine casing
Turbine blades
Turbo-generator under repair.
Turbo-generator
Turbine casing.
Turbine casing.
Honing of the generator slip rings.
Honing of the generator slip rings.
Liddell High Voltage Certificate.

How long for a ULL ID confirmation?

After years of waiting, the National Broadband Network is finally available at my home address from today.  I had pre-ordered an NBN deal from a different provider than my current phone/ADSL provider which is Optus. My new soon-to-be provider rang me this afternoon to tell me that they are ready to connect me, but to do so they needed me to confirm my ULL ID with Optus.

What is a ULL ID? It seems that it is a 10 digit number (starting with 161) that uniquely identifies the copper line connected to your house. Given the frustrating and time consuming interactions I’ve had with Optus in the past, I wasn’t too excited or hopeful about extracting this information from them.

So how long does it take to confirm a ULL ID with Optus? The answer turned out to be 44 minutes.

Time Duration (minutes) Activity
18:44 – 18:50 6 Try to find a phone number on the Optus website to ring technical support. It is almost unbelievable how hard it is to find a phone number to ring a phone company!
18:50 – 19:04 14 Give up on ringing Optus and have a go with their Live Chat support. After initiating a request for live chat, wait ….

19:04 – 19:10 6 Live chat with service agent for six minutes before she decides that it would be better to ring me and have a vocal instead of written conversation.
19:10 – 19:12 2 Brief conversation with service agent where she understands what the request is and that she will need to transfer me to the technical support team.
19:12 – 19:24 12 Waiting … listening to horrid hold ‘music’.
19:24 – 19:28 4 Brief conversation with technical support agent who reasonably quickly understands what I’m asking for, confirms my details, puts me on hold for a minute or so while he looks up the ULL ID and then supplies me with the ULL ID.

Yay.

TOTAL 44

Lets see how things go now with my new provider in connecting me to the NBN.