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Australian Defence forges research partnership to advance 3-D printing of energetic materials

Australian Defence forges research partnership to advance 3-D printing of energetic materials

On
Mar 2, Australian Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, announced
that the Defence Science and
Technology Group
(DST Group) will partner with industry and academia to
develop new technologies improving the safety and performance of explosives for
Defence and industry.

DST Group
is part of Australia's Department of Defence and is the second largest
public-funded research and development (R&D) organisation in Australia. It
is a national leader in safeguarding Australia by delivering valued scientific
advice and innovative solutions for Defence and national security.

According
to its Strategic
Plan 2013-2018
, DST Group is committed to continue serve as a valued
adviser to the Australian Government and focus efforts towards future Defence
and national security by being a collaborative partner and an innovation
integrator.

The
research partnership project will see DST Group working with several partners
including Victorian-based defence research company DefendTex Pty Ltd, the Royal
Melbourne Institute of Technology, Flinders University, and Cranfield
University in the UK.

Minister
Pyne said additive manufacturing or 3-D printing of energetic materials such as
explosives, propellants and pyrotechnics has the potential to transform their
performance and also offer significant logistical and cost benefits in their
manufacture.

“This
research could lead to the production of advanced weapons systems, which can be
tailored for unique performance and purpose,” Minister Pyne said.

At
the same time, the research also aims to allow broader access and more efficient
and environmentally friendly manufacturing opportunities to Australian industry
providing significant cost savings and competitive advantage for Defence, and
industries such as mining construction.

A$2.6
million has been committed over two years through the Cooperative
Research Centre (CRC) Program
. The CRC Program is administered by AusIndustry,
a division within the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. It aims
to foster high quality research to solve industry-identified problems through
industry-led and outcome-focused collaborative research partnerships between
industry entities and research organisations.

The
CRC Program contains 2 funding streams: (1) CRCs to support medium to long term
industry-led collaborative research and (2) CRC Projects (CRC-P’s) to support
short term, industry-led collaborative research.

Minister
Pyne congratulated all CRC project participants and looks forward to the
research outcomes.

“These
outcomes will have far-reaching civilian and Defence applications and
contribute to the development of critical expertise in energetic manufacturing
techniques in Australian industry,” said Minister Pyne.

Australian
Defence has been forming R&D partnerships with the industry to enhance the
capabilities of Defence. As reported
earlier
, a five-year research and development agreement between the Defence
Science and Technology Group and CEA Technologies to develop new solutions in
radar, communications, and electronic warfare has been announcedly recently.

“I welcome this great partnership which brings
together our Defence scientists’ signal processing, electronic protection, tracking
and data fusion capabilities with CEA Technologies’ active array and radar
expertise,” Minister Pyne said.

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