New Zealand’s in­no­va­tor of the year

DEMM Engineering & Manufacturing - - NEWS -

Elec­tri­cal engineering se­nior lec­turer Ni­hal Ku­laratna from the Univer­sity of Waikato was named New Zealand In­no­va­tor of the Year at the New Zealand Engineering Ex­cel­lence Awards at a gala din­ner at Te Papa on 27 Novem­ber 2013.

The award recog­nises Ku­laratna’s work in the field of elec­tronic engineering dur­ing his ca­reer, which spans 35 years.

Ku­laratna’s in­ter­est in elec­tri­cal engineering be­gan at an early age as he was grow­ing up in Sri Lanka.

“I used to walk home from pri­mary school across town with my friends. I started dig­ging around in the garbage bins of ra­dio re­pair shops pick­ing up dis­carded com­po­nents, which I didn’t know were re­sis­tors and ca­pac­i­tors.

“I en­joyed play­ing with them, and by the age of 10 I was able to use step-down trans­form­ers in­stead of bat­ter­ies to light up bulbs.”

He has con­trib­uted more than 100 pa­pers to jour­nals and in­ter­na­tional con­fer­ence pro­ceed­ings.

Ini­ti­ated in 2005, the New Zealand Engineering Ex­cel­lence Awards are the pre­mier awards for engineering pro­fes­sion­als in New Zealand.

Lead­er­ship, in­no­va­tion, en­trepreneur­ship and young engi­neers are also recog­nised along with the use of lead­ing-edge tech­nol­ogy.

Ni­hal Ku­laratna has been named New Zealand In­no­va­tor of the Year 2013.

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