Grant winner Chloe Smith looking at a computer and working.

2019 Grant recipients

As 2019 came to a close, the Western Australian Defence Science Centre (DSC) ended its inaugural year with an announcement of the State’s first ever defence research grants which saw $760,000 in funding to WA Academia, Industry and Defence projects.

The first round of grants fund exciting projects which will see Western Australian universities collaborate with national and international universities, some of the world's biggest defence industry companies and the Commonwealth's Defence Science and Technology Group.

Teaming people with artificial intelligence in warfare strategies, addressing biological warfare and communication with autonomous underwater vehicles are some of the projects which will benefit from the Defence Science Centre's inaugural defence research grants.

Western Australian Premier Mark McGowan said:

 "The research grants will bring some of the leading defence industry stakeholders together in Western Australia to find solutions or new ways to tackle defence and national security issues. It's part of a bigger program of works to benefit the industry through cross-industry innovation and strengthens our State's defence capabilities.”

Read the Premier's statement

Four Higher Degree Research Grants worth $60,000 in total were also awarded in 2019, to students working on collaborative defence-relevant projects and/or undertaking defence-industry placements as part of their study.

Murdoch University’s Chloe Smith was one of the recipients for her project on training and augmenting the human perceptual-cognitive performance of military personnel. Chloe aims to discover the most effective methods for developing and enhancing perceptual-cognitive skills in high stress environments.

Three students at Edith Cowan University were also awarded grants for their work on the human performance of military personnel.

The First DSC / APR Internship Voucher was awarded in October to Curtin University student Manaswini Natarajan for a 3 month internship program with Environmental Water Solutions Pty Ltd on a project based around PFAS filter development and testing.

Defence Issues Minister Paul Papalia said:

 "The Defence Science Centre grants program is a key pillar of the McGowan Government's target to grow the State's defence industry, support Defence and create new jobs.

"Defence needs are both varied and highly technical, and WA's world-leading expertise in robotics, cybersecurity and automation are examples of technologies that can be developed to have significant defence applications.