Manufacturing News

Two CRC bids combine to seek new manufacturing CRC funding

Manufacturing News

Two bids for new manufacturing related Cooperative Research Centres have agreed to merge their bid to increase opportunities for company involvement and the chance of securing CRC backing for their proposals.

The SMCRC (Surface Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre) and AMCRC (Additive Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre) have decided to merge into a single, unified bid. This strategic decision was made after careful consideration of feedback from industry and research partners.

According to one insider: “We realised that there was less value in having two separate manufacturing bids competing against each other.

“By combining our strengths and resources, we can create a more cohesive and powerful proposal from the manufacturing sector.”

In December @AuManufacturing featured a series of stories and a webinar seeking company involvement in the SMCRC bid – see here.

The two university backed groups had been pursuing separate bids for funding in Round 25 of the Australian government Cooperative Research Centres (CRC) Grant Program.

UniSA Industry Professor Colin Hall, who led the SMCRC bid, and the AMCRC and SMCRC bid teams recently gathered to develop a cohesive research, development and commercialisation plan that will see the proposed bid address the challenge of a diminishing manufacturing sector and a loss of sovereign capability.

“Combining additive with surface capabilities and having them in one CRC will support an integrated manufacturing innovation ecosystem to provide the next generation of high quality, sustainable and customised products.

“Additive Manufacturing is perfectly poised to offer low volume, high value production capabilities, linking critical parts of Australia’s supply chain and develop a resilient manufacturing ecosystem.”

The advantages of additive manufacturing and surface treatments address many of the challenges that Australian manufacturers face in getting products into world markets and with the national imperative to get Australia making again.

AMCRC’s bid is industry-led and backed by Australia’s peak manufacturing industry association, the Australian Manufacturing Technology Institute Limited (AMTIL), and leading research organisations including CSIRO.

The unified recognises the importance in developing a skilled workforce, with the CRC planning to develop training and certification programs to enhance the employability of individuals with certificate III apprenticeships.

It will also facilitate the integration of Masters/PhD students into the collaborative research projects.

Further reading:
Details of the SMCRC bid here.
Surface Manufacturing CRC – webinar recording available to view

Image: UniSA

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