Equipping Australia’s armed forces – the minnow and the defence prime

Our series – Equipping Australia’s armed forces – continues today with a focus on deepening relationships between defence prime contractors and relatively small Australian SMEs. Peter Roberts profiles Lockheed Martin Australia and Varley Group. It is easy to trace back the increasing complexity of relationships between foreign prime contractors and local SME suppliers to a…

Equipping Australia’s armed forces – Xtek switches into higher (more protective) gear

Our series – Equipping Australia’s armed forces – continues today with a focus on new materials and technologies for the battlefield. Here Peter Roberts interviews Philippe Odouard. Polyethylene seems a rather mundane word coming from Philippe Odouard who has long been associated with advanced materials, first leading composites manufacturer Quickstep and now as managing director…

Manufacturing news briefs – stories you might have missed

Skykraft completes first spacecraft Smallsat manufacturer SkyKraft has released a picture (below) of its first spacecraft nearing completion and preparing to move to AITC, Mt Stromlo, for testing. SkyKraft, a spin-off from the University of New South Wales Canberra, plans a satellite constellation for space-based Air Traffic Management services with operations commencing in 2023. Meanwhile…

Lunar rover and space thruster supported with Moon to Mars grants

Twenty organisations have shared $4 million in Moon to Mars Demonstrator Feasibility grants supporting projects ranging from university testing facilities to the development of a Lunar Construction Rover and an in-space chemical thruster. The grants will help transform concepts into space products and services, building an ecosystem of companies supporting the Australian Space Agency’s $150…

Fleet Space to progress its nanosatellite wide area network

IIot nanosatellite communications services provider Fleet Space Technologies will improve the capabilities of its hybrid satellite low-powered wide area network (LPWAN) following the award of a Mars Supply Chain Capability Improvement grant. Part of the Australian Space Agency’s $150 million Moon to Mars initiative, the grant will boost collaboration to miniaturise and ruggedise sensors in…