Carbon Revolution among winners in $28 million round of defence innovation grants

Fifteen grants totalling $28 million were announced on Thursday through the Defence Innovation Hub, including one to Geelong-based Carbon Revolution to develop world-first wheels for Chinook helicopters.


Defence industry minister Melissa Price said the grants included for concept exploration, technology demonstration, prototyping, capability demonstration and evaluation among the 15 businesses.  


Grant recipients included nanosatellite manufacturer Inovor Technologies and Carbon Revolution, the Geelong-based company best known for developing and manufacturing lightweight, one-piece carbon fibre wheels for companies including Ford and Ferrari.


The release from Price’s office states that Carbon Revolution will “develop the world’s first light-weight carbon fibre wheels for the Boeing CH-47F Chinook helicopter. If successful, this technology could improve the efficiency and performance” of the CH-47F.


Carbon Revolution completed a pre-IPO capital raising in June, advised by Ashurst, and issuing $73.4 million in convertible notes.


The Defence Innovation Hub initiative was announced in 2016 under the former Turnbull government’s Defence Industry Policy Statement, and has a budgeted $640 million up to 2025-2026 to invest in “maturing and further developing technologies” that have proceeded to the engineering and development stages.


The list of winners is below (source:


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Defence Innovation Hub contracts announced today:

Organisation Contract value (GST inclusive) Description of innovation
EM Solutions $5.8 million To continue the development of a satellite communications systems for potential deployment in current and future Royal Australian Navy vessels. This projects aims to deliver a prototype communications antenna for testing and demonstration on Navy vessels.
Inovor Technologies $5.7 million To deliver a prototype nanosatellite that will enhance space situational awareness.  This investment will continue to expand Australia’s growing space capability and has potential to contribute to supporting the global space surveillance network.
SiNAB Pty Ltd $4.4 million To develop a prototype Joint Terminal Attack Controller training solution that seeks to enhance the training capability of the Royal Australian Air Force. The training solution aims to improve operational agility by enhancing communications across multiple aircraft.
Solinnov Pty Ltd


$2.3 million To develop a software defined radio system with applications across electronic warfare, communications and sensing domains. This technology has the potential to replace multiple pieces of equipment with one light-weight, portable solution.
Carbon Revolution $2.4 million To develop the world’s first light-weight carbon fibre wheels for the Boeing CH-47F Chinook helicopter. If successful, this technology could improve the efficiency and performance of the CH-47F Chinook.
TAE Gas Turbines $2.1 million To develop an autonomous software system capable of monitoring the health and performance of M1 Abrams Tank engines. This technology has the potential to deliver efficiencies in vehicle maintenance and availability.
EM Solutions Pty Ltd $1.9 million To develop a low profile, flat panel antenna system. If successful, this system could increase communication capacity from land, air or sea platforms to satellites. 
GPSAT Systems Australia Pty Ltd $1.1 million To develop GPS jamming and spoofing counter measures. This technology seeks to deliver rapid threat detection and geo-location capabilities.
Clearbox Systems Pty Ltd $831,000 To develop a standalone software tool for the generation and management of cryptographic keys. This technology could deliver significant operational efficiencies across Defence.
Exablaze Pty Ltd $306,000 To explore the development of an automated object detection system with the capacity to operate in a range of light based conditions. This technology offers the potential to improve threat detection and surveillance capabilities.
QinetiQ Pty Ltd $280,000 To develop an alternative electrical power micro-grid solution for deployed forces. If successful, this technology will enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of in-field power generation systems and could be adapted to other power systems such as those on vehicles, ships and aircraft.
Macquarie University $264,000 To conduct a program definition study examining laser technology which seeks to show how to overcome performance problems of existing lasers and to optimise applications.
J3 Seven Pty Ltd $257,000 To explore the development of an Unmanned Aerial System prototype capable of detecting, sampling and analysing chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear substances. If successful, this technology could be used to reduce risks by enhancing the capacity to identify and analyse environmental threats from a safe distance.
Techventure Pty Ltd $229,000 To develop an alternative small and light arm projectile system that seeks to provide the Australian Army with ammunition that is more accurate and more lethal with a longer effective range.
Consunet Pty Ltd $180,000 To develop a software capability to enable electromagnetic battle management that integrates existing technologies.


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