Manufacturing news briefs – stories you might have missed


Li-S Energy expands production footprint at Deakin

Novel battery technology developer LiS Energy has grown with the addition of more facility space to increase production at Deakin University, Geelong’s Institute for Frontier Materials. Li-S has signed a lease to take an additional 1,000 square metres of space at the Waurn Ponds campus for the installation of equipment to lift production to an annual 1 megawatt hours each year. According to the company: “This state-of-the-art facility will demonstrate the scalability of our industry leading IP on lithium sulphur and lithium metal battery technology.”

APME awarded $23 million grant for production of precision medicines

The federal government has awarded a $23 million grant to the Australian Precision Medicine Enterprise group, led by Global Medical Solutions Australia. The funding through the Modern Manufacturing Initiative’s collaboration stream supports a project with a total value of $71.2 million, involving partners Monash University and Telix Pharmaceuticals, and production of precision medicines for the treatment of cancer, kidney disease and other illnesses. A new facility to be built in Clayton, Victoria would include “a high energy 30 mega-electron volt (MeV ) cyclotron, which will be a new domestic source of critical radioisotopes – which are currently imported into Australia – and will be used in the treatment of cancer, kidney disease and other illnesses,” said industry minister Angus Taylor. The project is expected to directly support an estimated 42 jobs and another 105 in the supply chain.

$25,000 grants available under Queensland’s New Market program

Exporters have been invited to apply for $25,000 in matched grants, delivered through Trade and Investment Queensland, to help expand their international reach. New Market Program grants could support with the cost of “promotional collateral, for sample distribution and market-specific certifications, or to attend international tradeshows” said the state’s trade minister Cameron Dick. Applications are open until Monday 23 May. More information can be found at

New ASC board members appointed

ASC has announced that Non-Executive Director Geoff Rohrsheim has been elevated to deputy chair and two new non-executive directors have been appointed to ASC’s Board for three-year terms by federal finance minister Simon Birmingham. ASC’s chair Bruce Carter said the appointments would further strengthen the organisation’s expertise and focus during a period of growth. The non-executive directors are Julie Cooper and Denise Goldsworthy, both highly-experienced business figures.

Fixx named nutrition partner for Canberra Times Marathon Festival
Queensland-based nutrition and wellness company Fixx Nutrition has been announced as a the official nutrition partner of the Canberra Times Marathon Festival 2022, which will be held at the weekend. The company was founded in 2017 by Michelle and Jan Buchegger and makes “a healthy, natural alternative to sugar-laden energy drinks” used by some runners. The company’s
signature CrampFix product range uses a “scientifically designed formulation inspired by an age-old cure for cramps – pickle juice.”
Fixx makes its products at a HACCP-accredited factory in Burleigh Heads.

Leadership programme for defence leadership

Defence is strengthening its science and technology workforce by selecting 80 of Australia’s brightest minds to be fast-tracked into leadership positions. The NAVIGATE program provides a pathway for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) specialists to transition into defence, or to provide career mobility to current Defence STEM professionals. Chief Defence Scientist Professor Tanya Monro said this new programme offers a unique opportunity for high-performing STEM professionals from a range of academic disciplines and different backgrounds. She said: “NAVIGATE will enhance Defence’s ability to leverage cutting-edge technology to keep Australians safe.” A key aim of NAVIGATE is to increase female representation, particularly at more senior levels. Applications closed in November – of the successful candidates offered a position on NAVIGATE, 43 per cent were female, 49 per cent were male, and eight per cent were undisclosed.

Fortescue to supply green hydrogen bridge to Europe

Fortescue Future Industries and E.ON have signed a memorandum of understanding to supply Germany and Europe with up to five million tons of green renewable hydrogen by 2030. This would replace one third of Germany’s natural gas imports from Russia. This amount would help to decarbonize small and medium enterprises to meet the Paris climate targets and could help to supply municipalities. According to a statement there is a way to go to get to what is an unprecedented ambition in Europe. FFI Chairman Forester said: “We will ship our sunshine to Europe.”

DroneShield updates command-and-control software

Drone detection and countermeasure manufacturer DroneShield has announced an enhanced version of its DroneSentry-C2 Command-and-Control software, in partnership with location intelligence firm, Nearmap. Nearmap provides city-scale 3D content, artificial intelligence data sets, geospatial tools, and high-resolution aerial imagery in Australia, New Zealand, and North America. DroneSentry-C2 is described as providing an intuitive and feature-rich software platform, providing counter-UAS awareness and reporting capability. It integrates both DroneShield and third-party C-UAS sensors and effectors, including multiple AI-enabled sensing and tracking products, such as RfOne long-range direction-finding sensors for UAS detection and tracking, and camera-agnostic DroneOptID optical/thermal camera AI software.

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