Stress-monitoring invention gets commercialisation boost through AMGC grant


Australian imaging technology startup 1Millikelvin has been awarded a $149,800 grant from the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre to support commercial progress of a new portable device to measure stress in structures.

The company’s technology — MiTE (Microbolometer Thermoelastic Evaluation) — has been developed with Department of Defence scientists. It uses infrared cameras to detect tiny changes in temperature in a structure that is under load, processing this data and creating highly-accurate stress maps.

“As a former salesman for a multinational infrared imaging specialist, I had been aware for some time of this transformative technology under development at Defence – our biggest customer at the time,” said Kheang Khauv, Managing Director at the company, which has spun off from LRM Technologies.

“After we formed LRM we jumped at the chance to bring MiTE to market. We started collaborating with Defence and our other partners to further develop prototypes for defence, aerospace and commercial application. With this grant, we will now be able to accelerate commercialisation and manufacture MiTE for global defence, aerospace and commercial applications.

“Previously to resolve temperature changes of even 20 millikelvin required a big, bulky defence- or scientific-grade machine costing close to $1 million, which only a scientist could operate. This system is much simpler to use, is able to resolve a temperature change of less than 1 millikelvin and could in later stages be deployed in civilian settings.”

Khauv cited potential uses in monitoring the structural health of a vast array of structures, from rollercoasters to civil infrastructure. The device had been successfully utilised in analysing stress points in a Lockheed Martin F-35 

The collaborative project links Khauv’s company with industrial design firm Outerspace, RMIT University and Defence, and will take the invention from Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 3 to TRL 7.

“We are thrilled to support this project, not only with funding, but in providing those invaluable linkages between industry and research organisations to support bringing this revolutionary product to market,” said Dr Jens Goennemann, Managing Director at AMGC.  

Picture: supplied

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