The University of Western Australia is part of a new consortium that will position Perth as a global centre for remote operations in space, where universities and industry will collaborate on space exploration projects such as NASA’s Lunar Gateway.
The Australian Remote Operations for Space and Earth (AROSE) is funded by a $1.5 million State Government grant and includes support from founding partners UWA, Woodside, Fugro, Nova Systems and Curtin University.
The consortium capitalises on the WA resource sector’s position as a global leader in autonomous and remote operations to develop technologies and services for space that will benefit future exploration, such as mining for water on the Moon.
It is estimated that in five years’ time the remote operations opportunities derived through AROSE will improve WA’s economy by $196 million on an annual basis and create 1,540 jobs in WA.
UWA Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dawn Freshwater, said the University was delighted to join a multi-disciplinary team, in which organisations and experts would be working together to solve some of the world’s most complex challenges.
“The University of Western Australia has a well-deserved reputation for world-class research. We are looking forward to contributing our expertise and facilities to making cutting-edge advances in areas such as robotics, automation, communications, energy and space exploration,” Professor Freshwater said.
State Science and Innovation and ICT Minister Dave Kelly said the government investment would turn Perth into a global centre for remote operations in space.
“As the world-leader in autonomous and remote operations and a participant in the space industry for more than 60 years, WA is primed and ready to contribute to the Australia-NASA Moon to Mars partnership,” Minister Kelly said.
“What AROSE will do, is take the world-class technology already utilised in Western Australia and adapt it for remote operations on the Moon, Mars and beyond.”