Thales approved to invest in Micro-X, Adelaide company to hire extra R&D staff

The Foreign Investment Review Board has approved a $10 million investment in listed Adelaide SME Micro-X (ASX:MX1) by Thales, with the companies to collaborate on new technology development for imaging systems for airports and elsewhere.

As reported in April, Micro-X has signed a contract with defence contractor Thales Group to develop mobile screening devices. Micro-X has developed carbon nanotube-based x-ray image processing, which allows for much smaller, lighter devices. Its products are currently used in hospitals and used for medical imaging.

The investment by French company Thales is through a six-year convertible bond. The companies’ alliance involves them developing products for purposes such as screening at airport checkpoints and for improvised explosive devices (IEDs) on the battlefield. Micro-X would supply the core imaging sensor, reports The Adelaide Advertiser, with the French company integrating these into their products. 

“Faster airport screening with improved threat detection in the airport screening market, and compact and agile systems with 3D imaging in the medical market are the Holy Grail,” Chris Jenkins, CEO of Thales Australia, told The Advertiser.

“Which is why we are proud to help anticipate these needs, by joining forces with Micro-X in this multifaceted collaboration to develop X-ray imaging systems based on X-ray sources that use Carbon Nanotubes cathodes at their heart.”  

Micro-X currently employs around 40, and intends to employ another 10 for R&D work, according to the article. It is based at Adelaide’s Tonsley Innovation District.


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