Prime Minister Julia Gillard took a tour around RMIT University’s $15 million manufacturing precinct – impressed with the latest in robotics and automated subtractive manufacturing equipment – the Prime Minister said “It’s been fantastic to be here today and see advanced manufacturing at work and people getting the skills they need for the future economy.”
‘Advanced manufacturing is one of Australia’s fastest growing export sectors, accounting for about half the nation’s $104 billion annual manufacturing output.’ RMIT
Something the Prime Minister found particularly interesting was the AMP’s additive manufacturing (3D printing) capabilities, with the precinct housing only one of two metal 3D printing Machines in Australia – valued at $1.2 million – the selective laser melting machines print/ mould fully functional parts direct from virtual 3D data.
‘These new manufacturing technologies will enable the production of a greater diversity of innovative products that meet a very wide range of consumer needs compared to conventional manufacturing technologies.’
The AMP currently assists 2,000 students across the Schools of Design TAFE, Engineering TAFE, Architecture and Design, Aerospace Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, and Electrical and Computer Engineering. Collaboration with industry includes research into surgical implants and other healthcare products such as hearing aids, as well as new developments in automotive products and technologies.
RMIT Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Margaret Gardner AO, welcomed the visit from Ms Gillard to the AMP.
“The precinct brings together students with researchers across the spectrum,” she said.
“RMIT scoured the world. We have the best of equipment and wonderful staff, and great support from governments and from industry.
“That combination provides students and researchers with the best tools and possibilities to explore ways that we might build a future in manufacturing in Australia.” Professor Margaret Gardner AO.