Government announces $21m in contracts for Australia’s defence industry

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Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price announced eight new contracts worth more than $21 million, funded under the Government’s flagship $640 million defence innovation program.

The contracts were awarded to small businesses from across Australia, and to two leading Australian universities to support the development of cutting edge space, cyber and maritime technologies.

Minister Price said the University of Sydney has been awarded a $6.5 million contract to develop a new electronic receiver system that uses light technology to enhance real time situational awareness.

“University of Sydney researchers will continue the development of a new imaging system that uses light manipulation technology to enhance real-time situational awareness for military operations,” Ms Price said.

“If successful, this technology could help to make decisions that will keep Australian troops safer in the battle space.”

Another contract, valued at $5.5 million, was awarded to Ocius, a small company that specialises in developing autonomous unmanned surface vessels.

“Defence’s partnership with Ocius will continue the development of its innovative Bluebottle vessel, which can conduct advanced maritime surveillance and communicate data in real time.”

“This technology could provide the Royal Australian Navy with a unique capability to protect Australia’s maritime borders.”

The remaining contracts were awarded to:

Penten Pty Ltd ($5.4 million) – To continue the development of data protection products.

UAV Vision Pty Ltd ($1.9 million) – To develop a compact lightweight, high-definition video system that can be fitted to unmanned aerial vehicles.

Quintessence Labs Pty Ltd ($1.7 million) – To develop a system that can rationalise multiple IT systems into one online environment.

High Earth Orbit Robotics Pty Ltd ($270,000) – To conduct research into de-centralised network technology that can be used to improve Defence’s situational awareness of the space domain.

RUAG Australia Pty Ltd ($270,000) – Together with RMIT and Monash University, RUAG are seeking to develop a new technique for repairing hulls, armour and mechanical systems.

Deakin University ($260,000) – To research the development of an Australian-based pilot training system for the Royal Australian Air Force.

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