Saturday, 23 August 2014

Australia's military innovation to be driven by Tasmanian maritime college

Tasmania will be the home of a new training centre for highly qualified Navy engineers, as Australia embarks on a multi-billion dollar naval shipbuilding program.
The Training Centre for Transforming Australia's Naval Manufacturing Industry will be based at the University of Tasmania's Australian Maritime College in Launceston.
It will partner with the University of Wollongong and Flinders University to train 10 PhD students and 3 postdoctoral fellows to drive the research and development required by the Defence Force.
The project's lead investigator Jon Binns says the Research Training Centre will focus on naval design and manufacturing.
"We have focus somewhat around the future submarines, future frigates and patrol boat programs but this is transferable technology that they'll be developing," he said.
"For example in the sustainment area we're looking at trying to integrate how you monitor navy boats and integrate that back into the design so that we should be able to get boats that perform better and longer."
Australian Maritime College Principal, Professor Neil Bose, says the project will have far-reaching outcomes.
"It includes the training and career advancement of highly qualified engineers needed to support the design and manufacture of the SEA1000 future submarines, whose [sic.] construction alone will be Australia's largest engineering project," he said.
Peter Rathjen from UTAS says the engineering and research students will work on year-long projects, which will be developed in partnership with industry and defence.
"The crux of this scheme is that our students will get the opportunity to get industry placements and that that will help them to develop more relevant skills," he said.
Bass MP Andrew Nikolic says the funding for the $3.8 million naval centre has come from the Australian Research Council and industry groups.
"Some of the biggest projects in the defence force over the next 20 to 30 years will be maritime projects," he said.
Brian Yates from the Australian Research Council hopes the new centre will lead to more innovation in the defence force.
"The people that will be trained through this centre will have that high level of skills that will help that industry be competitive both nationally and internationally," he said.

Students start their work at the centre in December.

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