Boost for Townsville defence innovation hub


The federal government is to back efforts by not for profit group North Queensland Simulation Park (NQ Spark) which is establishing an innnovation and industry precinct in critical technologies.

The government signed a $32.2 million that paves the way for work to begin on northern Australia’s first collaborative defence industry hub in Townsville.

Also supported by the Townsville City Council, the Queensland Government and James Cook University, the hub will provide simulation training opportunities for regional science and the defence, emergency response, health and knowledge sectors.

The Department of Defence will work closely with NQ Spark throughout the planning and development stages to support the successful delivery of the facility.

Acting Minister for Defence Brendan O’Connor said: “The NQ Spark facility will deliver world-class simulation training and opportunities to north Queensland.

“This investment, led by defence industry in Townsville, means more jobs and more opportunities for the local community.”

According to the NQ Spark Foundation: “This unique combination of Defence, Health and Science knowledge provides an unparalleled collaborative opportunity to develop sovereign test, evaluation, certification, and assurance systems to support the ADF and industry with safe, effective and fit for purpose products and systems that have been robustly evaluated in Tropical and Sub Tropical environments within live, virtual and constructive environments.”

North Queensland has emerged as a major strategic asset in defence production and basing.

Other aviation and space test and launch facilities are being developed at Cloncurry – The Queensland Flight Test Facility – and Abbot Point – a Rocket Launch Facility.

Minister for Defence Industry Pat Conroy said: “Development of the NQ Spark facility is expected to generate up to 800 jobs and inject over $200 million into the local economy, which is a significant boost for the north Queensland community.

“This is a unique integration of industry sectors such as health, emergency services and universities, with flow-on social and economic benefits to the broader community.

“This facility will bring these sectors together through defence industry, to deliver world class simulation training.

“NQ Spark can set the benchmark for similar initiatives across the country.”

Picture: NQ Spark

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