Monash joins leading experts in heatwave discussion

11 April 2014

As our climate continues to change and extreme weather patterns become more frequent, increasing pressure will be placed on Melbourne’s resources to combat resulting issues.

Monash University Information Technology School
Study IT and environmental sciences at Monash University

On Monday, March 31 at Federation Square, Dr Ariel Liebman from the Monash University Faculty of Information Technology joined a panel of leading experts in the City of Melbourne’s event, Not So Hypothetical – A Heated Conversation.
In a hypothetical-style event, based on a 10-day heatwave over 40 degrees, representatives from the business, environment and civic sectors addressed the threats heatwaves trigger in their respective areas.
As the director of energy and carbon programs at Monash University, Dr Liebman is researching the impact extreme energy demand caused by extreme weather can have on energy supplies and cites the problem as quite complex.
“Supply adequacy depends on several factors: electricity demand, generation capacity, high-voltage electricity transmission capacity, low-voltage electricity distribution network capacity, and consumers’ ability to reduce load,” Dr Liebman said.
The experts explored strategies for coping with extreme heatwaves and address the immediate and lasting effects past heatwaves have had on Melbourne. Forecasts and strategies were exchanged between panel members to explore what the future holds for Melbourne and the world when encumbered by the crippling effects of heat waves.
The panel aimed to advise audiences on how to prepare for adverse scenarios inevitable during a heat wave, as well as exploring the influence multiple sectors have on the overall functioning of a city’s urban life.
A heat wave increases water consumption, strain on public services and infrastructure failure.
“Smart grids can relieve congestion in the network and ultimately benefit the entire supply chain. When deployed grid-wide, this will reduce the absolute level of peak demand for a given level of energy demand and thus require less infrastructure to support,” Dr. Liebman says.

Monash University Faculty of Information Technology

Monash University is the only Go8 university with a dedicated IT faculty. Monash is ranked as one of the top 50 universities in the world by the 2013 QS World University Rankings for Computer Science and Information Systems, which means Monash IT graduates hit the global marketplace with a globally recognized degree.
Dr Ariel Liebman is an Adjunct Senior Research Fellow with the Faculty of Information Technology in this role he is coordinating Monash University‘s development of an energy market modelling and analysis capability. This includes wholesale market price projections, carbon price simulation and Smart Grid Modelling. Ariel is an energy industry professional with 15 years’ experience in the National Energy Market; combining real-world energy market experience with strong training in analytic and quantitative scientific research. He specializes in electricity and energy market modelling, price forecasting and portfolio analysis, and advises on the various components of the electricity supply chain and impacts of economic regulation of electricity networks on the delivered electricity price. He uses a modern, state-of-the-art energy price modelling software tool called Plexos; provides a strategic view of the end-to-end supply chain price impacts of market trends and government policies; and helps energy industry stakeholders including generators, retailers, and consumers develop a better understanding of the impacts of energy policy on their businesses.

Would you like to learn more about Information Technology and environmental science programs at Monash University? Email OzTREKK’s Australian Information Technology Schools Admissions Officer Rachel Brady at, or call toll free in Canada at 1-866-698-7355. Find out how you can study in Australia!