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Australia announces 3 new Defence Innovation Hub contracts to boost defence industry

Recently,
it was announced
that three Australian businesses have been awarded contracts through the
Defence Innovation Hub to further develop innovative technologies to maintain a
war fighting advantage.

As reported
earlier
, the Australian Budget 2018-19 committed over A$36 billion in
defence technology and industry. The Budget maintains the Australian
Government‘s commitment to provide Defence with a stable and sustainable
funding with the Defence budget growing to two% of GDP by 2020–21. The
Government will provide Defence with A$36.4 billion in 2018–19 and
A$160.7 billion over the forward estimates.

Minister
for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, said the contracts totalling
over A$1.2 million demonstrates the Government’s commitment to supporting local
Defence industry and harnessing its innovation potential while developing new
capabilities.

The
three contracts are:

(1)   
A$659,000 for Aerospace
and Mechanical Consulting Engineers Pty Ltd
to develop a lightweight armour
solution for the Australian Defence Force aircraft using panels designed with
new materials and ballistic protection level,

(2)   
A$293,000 for Unmanned Aerial Systems Pty Ltd
to combine features of a helicopter and a fixed wing aircraft in order to
increase performance, efficiency and capability, and

(3)   
A$287,000 for Defence
Materials Technology Centre Limited
to invent an armour for soldiers that
is lightweight with improved protection levels and functional integration.

“The
Defence Innovation Hub is supporting Australian industry throughout all
development stages of the innovation process; from concept exploration and
technology demonstration, through to prototyping and integrating capability
demonstration and evaluation,” Minister Pyne said.

According
to Minister Pyne, investing in Defence innovation will not only build the
innovation capabilities of Australian industry and research organisations, it
will also deliver innovative capability solutions for use by Defence.

Funded
at around A$640 million over the decade to 2025-26, the Defence Innovation Hub
accepts proposals on innovations at all stages, from early stage concept
exploration and technology demonstration through to advanced prototypes for
integration, test and evaluation.

Earlier
in March, the Australian Government announced the
second tranche
of Defence Innovation Hub investments worth A$12.3
million, looking at the exploration of innovation technologies from unmanned
undersea glider for surveillance to quantum cybersecurity and 3D sensors for
threat monitoring in conflict zones. Minister Pyne also
announced
five innovation contracts as investments of the Defence
Innovation Hub. The contracts worth A$5.3 million in total.

Industry
and research organisations can continue to submit proposals through the Defence Innovation Portal.