Researchers in the University of Sydney’s School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering, the Australian Centre for Field Robotics, and the Australian Centre for Microscopy & Microanalysis have received over $800k for three collaborative space projects, under the federal government’s Modern Manufacturing Initiative and the Moon to Mars Demonstrator Feasibility Grants scheme.

The three separate grants have been jointly awarded to the researchers and partner organisations to develop and manufacture a low-cost, durable, liquid-fuelled rocket with high performance; to enhance robots’ navigation in space; and to allow the development of robotic sensors. 

Federal Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Christian Porter said Australia has unique opportunities when it comes to space manufacturing. 

“These grants will help bolster Australia’s reputation in the growing global civil space industry and build on the important work being led by our Australian Space Agency,” Minister Porter said.

Australian Space Agency director Enrico Palermo said the Moon to Mars Demonstrator Feasibility Grant recipients highlighted the breadth, depth and excellence of skills in the Australian civil space sector. 

“The projects funded are leading examples of Australia’s capabilities in developing space technologies, which will only continue to grow and expand into the future,” Mr Palermo said.