Four Curtin projects support WA defence research

Four Curtin-led research projects will help pave the way for the next generation of defence technology as part of the annual Collaborative Research Grant program awarded by the State Government.

Announced by Defence Industry Minister Paul Papalia , the projects cover optimising maintenance for the Collins Submarine Fleet, diver communication systems, mathematical modelling of the spread of misinformation and an Australian portable quantum optical clock.

Curtin University Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research Professor Chris Moran said the Curtin-led research projects would help to strengthen WA’s defence industry capabilities.

"Curtin researchers will work together with other key experts in the field to support the development of the next generation of defence technology right here in Western Australia," Professor Moran said.

"The State Government is supporting this vital collaboration to ensure WA remains at the forefront of supporting Australia’s sovereign defence capabilities by commercialising emerging technologies that will play a key role.

"By diversifying research and development in the defence technology sector, the Collaborative Research Grant program seeks to build industry and academic collaborations to enhance the impact of our research."

The four Curtin-led projects include:

  • Advanced fabrication of cold atom traps for an Australian portable quantum optical clock: Dr William Rickard – Led by Curtin University in collaboration with The University of Western Australia, University of Adelaide and Australian National University;
  • Data-driven maintenance optimisation for the Collins Submarine Fleet: Professor Ryan Loxton – Led by Curtin University in collaboration with Australian Submarine Corporation;
  • Psychologically informed mathematical modelling of misinformation spread: Dr Mengbin Ye – Led by Curtin University in collaboration with The University of Western Australia; and
  • Situational aware undersea acoustic diver communication system: Professor Yue Rong – Led by Curtin University in collaboration with Edith Cowan University, O2 Metocean, and Precision Technic Defence


Curtin will also collaborate on a research project, led by The University of Western Australia’s Dr David Gozzard, to eliminate the need for adaptive optics in satellite optical communications, in partnership with Goonhilly Satellite Earth Station.

The 2022 round of the Collaborative Research Grant program received its highest ever number of grant applications, with 29 research programs applying for up to $150,000 of financial assistance each.

To read the Minister’s media release, visit here.

CRICOS Provider Code: 00301J ABN: 99 143 842 569 TEQSA: PRV12158

Curtin University would like to pay our respect to the indigenous members of our community by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land on which the Perth campus is located, the Wadjuk people of the Nyungar Nation; and on our Kalgoorlie campus, the Wongutha people of the North-Eastern Goldfields.

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