I was delighted to be at Deakin University today with Vice-Chancellor Jane den Hollander, to celebrate the news of a $4.7 million Australian Research Council (ARC) federal grant to help fund the establishment of an international future fibre research hub.
The funding has been awarded under the ARC Industry Transformation Research Programme which will see nine new research hubs across Australia commence research programs in priority areas.
The “World Class Future Fibre Industry Transformation Research Hub” has also attracted $3m of funding from industry partners such as HEIQ Australia, Carbon Revolution, Quickstep Automotive and Cytomatrix.
The Hub will conduct cutting edge research and development into new technology synthetic and natural fibres, as part of Deakin’s Australian Future Fibres Research and Innovation Centre.
The Hub will also operate in partnership with the CSIRO and a number of overseas universities such as Oxford University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
The Hub will be a world class national centre of research and development in fibre based product manufacturing. It will work with small and medium enterprises to commercialise the latest innovations in fibre materials.
Future fibres including carbon fibres and nanofibres are an exciting future frontier for Australian science, and Deakin’s expertise in this area is already providing major opportunities for the Geelong region.
Deakin University is to be congratulated for winning this very significant grant, one of only four in the country. This is another example of how our university city is building a reputation as a national centre of innovation, particularly in advanced manufacturing.