Three work tirelessly for science

Ian MacTavish, Denham Dunstall and Kevin Quadros. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d405681
Ian MacTavish, Denham Dunstall and Kevin Quadros. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d405681

Exhibition director Denham Dunstall, electronics manager Kevin Quadros and maintance manager Ian MacTavish are the only remaining staff from the original full-time crew of 24 when Scitech launched on August 13, 1988.

The trio have worked on numerous exhibits from old favourites such as the dinosaurs, giant heart and lungs, and the chicken hatchings to the more recent ‘Playing with Lights’.

Mr Dunstall said while working at Scitech had not always been ‘beer and skittles’, it was a special job that had challenged them and given them the opportunity to be creative.

‘Industrial strength is not strong enough for our floor, people should send their industrial strength products for destruction testing, that’s the sort of environment it is,’ Mr Dunstall said. ‘One thing you learn when you’re looking at building something is you think ‘well they won’t do that’ ” yes they will.’

Mr Quadros said the only difference between Mythbusters and Scitech workshop staff was Mythbusters’ projects had to work once or twice, while theirs had to work for 10 years. Eleven Scitech-built exhibits have gone on world tours.

Scitech will be moving from West Perth to Burswood in 2018.

‘We’ve outgrown this space (West Perth). From the day we started here we’ve had this idea we’ll have our own home one day,’ Mr Denham said.

While the men do not think they will be working at Scitech when it celebrates its 50th birthday, they hope the impression they have made on young minds across the world will last for a long time.

‘You do hear stories of people who’ve come here and been influenced to go on and become scientists. Hopefully we’ve made a difference to some people’s lives,’ Mr Denham said.