A physical oceanographer in the School of the Environment, Associate Professor Jochen Kaempf (pictured) is one of three finalists for the Sherman Environmental Research Prize, and human physiologist Dr Phillip Dinning is a finalist in the Innovative Use of Technology category.
The winners will be announced by the Australian Museum on September 6.
Associate Professor Kaempf’s research has led to the discovery of the South Australian Coastal Upwelling System. In one of the few ecological “hot spots” in Australian waters, seasonal upwelling of nutrient-enriched water across the continental shelf break near Kangaroo Island acts as the trigger for a highly productive marine food chain.
Associate Professor Kaempf’s recent studies have substantially contributed to understanding the dynamics of this important marine region.
Dr Dinning and his CSIRO colleague, Dr John Arkwright, have used a fusion of fibre optic technology and clinical expertise to develop a pressure-sensing catheter that provides intricate detail of muscular contractions from deep within the human colon. These devices are providing new hope in the search for therapies for socially taboo diseases such as constipation and incontinence.