Our Team

We are an experienced team of professional engineers with an extensive background in providing operational and analytical geotechnical support to a range of key stakeholders. These stakeholders range from the mining workforce (operators, shift supervisors, foreman) and technical staff, to the Statutory Position Holders and Senior Management Teams.

Trent Nester

Trent is a Geotechnical Engineer graduating from RMIT University Bachelor of Engineering (Geological) with Honours in 2001. Trent has over 20 years of site-based experience working for a range of companies and clients from junior miners to the global mining houses in both open pits and underground. During this time Trent has learned a wide range of mining styles including both handheld and mechanized mining techniques in squeezing, seismically active, and self-mining rock masses. Trent co-founded Operational Geotechs in 2016.

Trent has also engaged in project works including the construction of batch and paste plants, start-ups and re-starting of mines, remnant mining and pillar recovery, and paste optimization using additives to name a few. Trent’s passion is in providing a pragmatic approach to technical challenges, risk assessment and mitigation, and mentoring and developing other geotechnical professionals.

Ben Barsanti

Ben has broad mining experience over his 18 year career with exposure to underground and open-pit mining, gold and nickel commodities in Western Australia and Northern Territory. Graduated from RMIT University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Engineering (Geological) and undertook further studies at WASM with course work in Master of Science in Mining Geomechanics.

During his career, Ben has gained a variety of geotechnical experience working for Gold Fields Australia, La Mancha Resources and Newmont Asia Pacific in various geotechnical roles before co-founding Operational Geotechs in 2016. Ben’s experience ranges from narrow vein to bulk stoping mining styles, handheld and mechanized mining techniques, squeezing ground conditions, seismicity, weak rock masses, start-ups and re-starts of mines, and paste plant construction, implementation and optimisation.

In addition to Ben’s geotechnical experience, he has also held the position of Technical Services Coordinator for a +2Mt per annum mining operation. He was responsible for the geotechnical, survey and mine scheduling functions.

Ash Page

Ash is a Geotechnical Engineer over 9 years of experience in the mining industry. His experience as a site geotechnical engineer covers both hard rock underground and open pit operations in gold and base metals.

During his career, Ash has gained experience to a range of mining methods and environments including; small to large scale open pit mining, narrow vein and bulk longhole open stoping, longhole room and pillar, modified Avoca, remnant mining, deep and high stress, highly seismic, squeezing ground, shallow/weathered ground, paste and CRF backfill.

Ash’s technical capabilities include; ground support design and optimisation for static and dynamic conditions, seismic system design and implementation, seismic monitoring and analysis, QAQC of installed ground support, prism and radar (Reutech and IDS) monitoring, raisebore analysis, design input for development and stoping activities, installation of geotechnical instrumentation (including live monitoring), rock mas classification, logging, design and implementation for the grout consolidation of loose rock fill.

Chris (Kit) Moulding

Christopher has over 10 years experience within the mining industry, completing his Engineering Geology and Geotechnics honours degree from the University of Portsmouth in the UK. He then began working in 2011 with Barrick Gold gaining experience within seismically active ground, backfill management, narrow vein, bulk and remnant mining. He then transitioned over to Gold Fields to work in squeezing rock masses at depth and ultramafics lithologies to develop long term stability strategies and designs. He has managed geotechnical teams and mentored graduates across multiple sites.

Other areas of experience include; rock mass data collection, ground support QAQC, ground support design and optimisation, mine sequencing, stope assessments, numerical modelling, seismic system design and analysis, feasibility studies, GCMP revisions & audits, backfill management, LOM geotechnical planning, rock fall investigations, trigger action response plans & geotechnical team management/development.

Dan Barnett

Dan has been working as a Geotechnical professional for over 12 years, in both the Civil and Mining industries. Taking an opportunity in 2011 to join the mining industry in the WA goldfields, Dan has gained significant experience in a range of underground geotechnical environments, including small scale narrow vein mining, paste fill, bulk open stoping and sub level caving operations.

He also has significant experience with managing seismic risk, as well and designing and maintaining large seismic arrays. Dan has also carried out ground support design and optimization for dynamic, static and squeezing conditions and enjoys providing a pragmatic approach to technical challenges.

Jeremy Doolan

Jeremy is a qualified Geotechnical Engineer and experienced Mining Professional with over 18 years site based operational and technical consulting experience predominantly in underground hard rock mines in Australia. After graduating from RMIT University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Engineering (Geological), Jeremy began his career at Mt Isa working at George Fisher and Black Star operations followed by roles at Lihir Gold, Mining One and Newcrest Mining.

Jeremy has extensive experience managing the geotechnical requirements applied to various mining methods – sublevel caving, block caving, open stoping, narrow vein mining and has undertaken high-level geotechnical reviews and due diligence studies across a number of operations. He has held various senior roles within Newcrest Mining across two flagship operations which started as senior geotechnical engineer and culminated in the leading Telfer Operation as Manager Mining.

He is an experienced and respected people leader who thrives on the operational, technical, and human resources challenges of building and operating mines with a keen focus on safe design and operation and optimized resource extraction applied through a hands-on approach.

Sam Webb

Sam is a qualified Geotechnical Engineer with over 7 years of experience in the mining industry. Sam’s experience includes a full year working as an underground operator and 5 years as an operational geotechnical engineer in underground hard rock mines.

Sam has gained exposure to mining methods including; long hole open stoping methods, longhole room and pillar, modified Avoca, remnant mining, and environments including deep and high stress, highly seismic, squeezing ground, structurally controlled and weathered shallow excavations, legacy operations and surface slope instability.

Sam’s capabilities include ground control design and optimisation for static and dynamic conditions, seismic monitoring system design including implementation and associated monitoring and analysis, QA/QC of ground control installation, geotechnical design input for development stoping activities (including CRF backfill design) installation and monitoring of geotechnical instrumentation, raise bore analysis, rock mass classification including mapping and logging, design and implementation of grout consolidation of loose rock fill.

Candice Hales

Candice has been working as a Geotechnical Engineer in the mining industry since 2017, with exposure to open pit and underground mining, in coal, nickel, gold and iron ore commodities in Queensland and Western Australia. She graduated from the University of Queensland in 2016 with a Bachelor of Engineering (dual major in Mining and Geotechnical with Honours).

Her experience has been in a range of mining methods and environments from small satellite to larger open pits, longhole open stoping with paste backfill, longhole benching with rib and sill pillars, narrow vein, sublevel caving, modified Avoca, remnant mining, deep and high stress, highly seismic and squeezing ground at depth.

Candice’s technical capabilities include; seismic monitoring and analysis, seismic system implementation and maintenance, prism and radar (Reutech, IDS and GroundProbe) deployment and monitoring, installation of geotechnical instrumentation, ground support QAQC, stope assessments, numerical modelling, GCMP and procedure revisions and audits, rock fall investigations, trigger action response plans, and design input for development and production activities (ground support and mine plan sequencing) to develop long term stability strategies.

Vishnu Gopalakrishnan

Vishnu has over 8 years experience in the industry across both underground and open pit mining in gold and nickel. Vishnu holds a Bachelor of Technology (Mechanical Engineering) and a Master of Engineering Science (Mining) from WASM. He started his career at Evolution Mining’s Mungari Operation, gaining experience in underground mining, open pit operations, pastefill and project management. During this time, Vishnu was responsible for optimizing the paste fill operations by replacing the clay rich dry tailings source from a decommissioned dam to an active tailings dam.
Vishnu’s technical capabilities include managing high stress conditions, seismically active ground, sublevel caving, narrow vein and large open stoping, pastefill operations, and ground control management. As well as his geotechnical experience, Vishnu has held a role as Pastefill Supervisor.

Sachin Weerasooriya

Sachin graduated in 2018 with a Bachelor of Civil Engineering from University of Queensland and is beginning his career as a mining geotechnical engineer. During his time studying, Sachin has gained various mine site experience at OZ Minerals Carrapateena Mine, Westgold Resources Central Murchison Gold Project under the guidance of Operational Geotechs personnel.

More recently Sachin has gained exposure to various mining methods and rock mass conditions, seismically active mining environments and backfill operations at Gold Fields St Ives Gold Mine & Granny Smith Mine, South32 Cannington Mine and 29Metals Golden Grove.

Bec Clark

Bec graduated with a Bachelor of Science (Geology) and a Master of Science in Applied Geotechnics from Camborne School of Mines before starting her mining career in WA as a geotechnical engineer in the mining industry. During this time, Bec has worked at multiple sites and has experience in narrow vein and bulk open stoping, squeezing ground conditions, mining in poor ground and paste fill. She has worked on a variety of projects, including optimising production through stope reconciliation, tailings suitability for paste and raisebore designs.

Khairul Fahmi

Khairul (Fahmi) is a Geotechnical Engineer with over 10 years experience across underground and open pit operations in hard and soft rock. Fahmi holds a Bachelor of Mine Engineering and has specialised in underground mining large open stope, narrow vein and remnant mining operations including paste fill stability analysis, numerical modelling, instrumentation and monitoring. His experience at Gosowong and leading their geotechnical team are valuable skills which will benefit many of our clients. 

Nick Cox

Nick commenced his career in 2019 following several years travelling aboard after graduated in 2013 from University of Tasmania. Nick has been gaining underground experience and developing his geotechnical skills at Grange Resources Savage River North Project and Newmont’s Tanami Operation. He has gained experience in large open stoping, geotechnical data collection, ground support QAQC, developing in poor ground conditions and large underground infrastructure projects (shaft sinking and crusher chamber).

Jay Rathod

Jay holds a Bachelor and Master of Mining Engineering, and has been working for as a junior geotechnical engineer since 2019. He has gained experience at BHP Leinster Nickel Operations, Westgold Resources’ Meekatharra Gold Operations and Gold Field’s Granny Smith Operation along with various underground operational roles in Australia and India. Jay’s expertise covers narrow vein and bulk open stoping, squeezing ground conditions, ground support QAQC and design.

Jed Percy

After graduating from Camborne School of Mines with a Master of Science in Applied Geotechnics, Jed moved to Australia to start his career as a mining geotechnical engineer. Jed has gained experience at various sites and has been exposed to narrow vein open stoping, bulk open stoping, squeezing ground conditions, development designs, raisebore assessments, mining in poor ground conditions, paste fill and CRF. He is driven to improve paste fill operations at mine sites and has worked on projects to optimise pastefill operations, reticulation design, assessing filling strategy, alternate binders and barricade designs.

Jed has commenced as our dedicated Backfill Engineer working on backfill projects and site secondments with our valued clients. 

Andrew Wilson

Andrew started his career as an engineering geologist after graduating from the University of Melbourne with a Bachelor and Master of Science (Geology) in 2018. He worked on a variety of desktop and field-based projects including mining operations, tailings facilities, dams and civil works. Since joining OG, Andrew has continued to develop his technical skills in mining geotech and supervise a large scale geotechnical data collection project.

Alex Mckee

Alex graduated from University of Aberdeen with a Master of Science (Geology) in 2019 and started his career in Oil & Gas as a Field Engineer before moving into the civil engineering industry. He worked on a variety of desktop and field-based projects which have included reviewing and analysing geotechnical data, numerical modelling and creating rock mass models. Since joining OG, Alex has started developing his operational and technical skills as a mining geotechnical engineer.

Kevin Jin

Kevin commenced his career in 2020 after graduated from the University of Tasmania with a Bachelor of Engineering (Geotechnical). Kevin worked at Savage River NPUG and Havieron JV projects gaining experience in data collection before commencing an operational geotech role at Minjar Gold’s Pajingo operation. Recently, Kevin has worked at Henty Gold as an underground geotech then gained experience as a production engineer.

Naomi Turner
Human Resource Advisor

Diane Viskovich & Kristy Barsanti
Administration & Accounts