The Australian Space Agency (ASA) and Airbus have signed a statement of intent that will see the European aerospace manufacturer provide support for space discovery, technology development and connectivity, and STEM education in Australia.
Pierre Jaffre, President Asia-Pacific Airbus said the move confirmed the company’s commitment towards enhancing the capability and competitiveness of the country’s space sector.
“Airbus aims to support projects and partnerships that contribute to growth and jobs in Australia, with a special focus on innovation and skills,” Mr Jaffre stated.
“We look forward to working with the Australian Space Agency, as well as the country’s academia, SMEs and start-ups, to develop Australia’s space sovereign capability. This includes nurturing and developing areas of strategic priority and technologies identified by an expert reference group panel.”
Dr Megan Clark AC, Head of ASA, said the two parties shared the same interest in enhancing the competitiveness and capability of the Australian space industry, and recognise the growing importance of commercialisation at every point along the space value-added chain, from R&D to high-tech manufacturing, transportation, satellite operations and consumer services based on satellite signals and data.
“The Australian Space Agency is committed to a transparent and significant engagement with industry. Our purpose is to transform and grow the Australian space sector, and the broader use of space across the country’s economy, to inspire and deliver benefit to all Australians,” Ms Clark continued.
“We welcome Airbus’ choice of Australia for the world’s first operations of the Zephyr and Skynet 5 platforms. We also welcome Airbus’ efforts to actively support STEM education and training opportunities in Australia and internationally.”
Airbus Defence and Space has a major presence in Australia and has been supplying earth observation satellite imagery to the Australian market for over 25 years.