First MackHack a big success for future METS opportunities

First MackHack a big success for future METS opportunities

The future of mining innovation was on show over the weekend at the inaugural MackHack mining hackathon in Mackay.

On Friday night over 30 local innovators, problem solvers and disruptors kicked of an intense weekend of mentoring and concept development for a mixture of their own ideas and also industry challenges presented by local mining houses.

The weekend culminated at the final pitch and judging event on Sunday 9 June 2019.  Five teams presented to industry experts and potential mining customers, showcasing their technologies, solutions and their developing business models in front of a live audience.

This inaugural METS sector hackathon was run by Split Spaces with funding and support from the Queensland Government and METS Ignited, as part of a series of programs designed to provide regional Queensland METS companies with opportunities to develop and showcase the skills and capabilities required to provide solutions to mining challenges with real technological and commercial potential.

The event was also made possible through collaboration between a number of local stakeholders, including Mackay Regional Council, CSIRO, BHP, Glencore and Mastermyne.

MackHack ran from 7 to 9 of June, providing participants with deep-dive workshops, mentoring and support from industry leaders, entrepreneurs and subject matter experts helping to develop their ideas and responses to key mining industry challenges.

At the conclusion of the weekend five teams were given the chance to pitch to an elite panel of representatives from METS Ignited, BHP, Glencore, Mastermyne and the Resource Industry Network (RIN).

The successful pitches were:

  • Lightbound, took out first prize, for an IOT class 1 laser boundary illumination system with the judges loving the innovative approach to marking boundaries with laser.
  • Bretfree Deflector took out second prize.  This innovative technology proposes to increase safety and improve production through a device the team have prototyped, and 3D printed to deflect bretby debris falling off conveyors.
  • Your Mining Hub came in third place for its integrative community hub approach to buying mining safety gear online combined with other products and services for miners and visitors.

Judge, Jarred Stanes from Mastermyne Group,

"Mastermyne was a proud partner of this event which attracted over 30 competitors to the opening night and ultimately led to pitches from five groups with unique solutions to local industry problems. Over $5000 in prizes was awarded after the 54-hour hackathon with several groups now positioned for industry partnerships and funding. As a leading employer of local and regional talent, Mastermyne was buoyed by the capability and dedication shown by all competitors. Congratulations to the winning team "Light Bound" with their pitch including a business model and working laser prototype.

METS Ignited Acting CEO Ian Dover said MackHack is part of a series of regional accelerator programs, aimed at providing regional METS companies with the opportunity to develop their business capabilities using the tools and techniques available to the start-up and scale-up accelerators and to progress their latest innovations to commercialisation.

"Australian companies have a long history of providing reliable and innovative solutions to the mining sector, METS Ignited is proud to be a supporting partner in another regional program providing training and commercialisation pathways to local businesses.  It was very exciting to see the calibre of the digital and technology-focused solutions coming out of the first-time event," said Dr Dover.

Split Spaces Community Manager, Deb Allan was extremely pleased with the number of participants, the potential of their proposals and the level of support for the event from local organisations.

"We are very happy with the way the event was embraced by our local community. A couple of the teams have had some encouraging discussions with local customers and research organisations, based on what they pitched at the showcase on Sunday evening. We have so many capable people in the region with amazing ideas and this event is a great way to give them a chance to develop the skills they need to succeed in the challenging realm of entrepreneurship."

To find out more about the events and happenings at Split Spaces visit  or for membership enquiries

To find out more about the METS Ignited visit


Media Enquiries:

METS Ignited Tobie Paulson - 0421 554 206