The Australian Space Agency has signed a statement of strategic intent and co-operation with EOS Space Systems, the Canberra-based company specialising in space tracking systems.
Maintaining a comprehensive space situation awareness in Australia is a critical enabler for the nation to achieve its ambitions in space. The government has acknowledged the importance of this capability as a national priority area in the Australian Civil Space Strategy 2019 2028.
EOS has developed and maintains an advanced space situational awareness capability in Australia. It designs and manufactures precision sensors and operates space facilities at Mount Stromlo, ACT, and Learmonth, Western Australia. This EOS capability significantly enhances Australia’s ability to measure, understand and respond to critical activities in space.
Anthony Murfett, deputy head of the Australian Space Agency, said that the joint statement aligns with the Australian Civil Space Strategy, which sets out a 10-year plan to transform and grow the space industry.
"Space situational awareness and debris monitoring is one of the seven National Civil Space Priorities outlined in the strategy. EOS Space Systems are building, operating and developing the infrastructure to track the growing number of objects in space and keep Australians safe, on Earth and in space," explained Murfett.
EOS currently operates a network of space situational awareness sensors at Mt Stromlo in the ACT and Learmonth in Western Australia. This network currently tracks 10,000 space objects per week, and it will look to expand on this capability.
Low levels of light and radio interference in much of our regional areas gives us the unique opportunity to develop our commercial industry for tracking space objects.
"Australia’s geographic location in the southern hemisphere enables monitoring of parts of space from our unique view into the solar system," Murfett added.
As EOS Space Systems looks to expand across more sites in Australia, it will bring with it advanced technology and high-tech jobs in infrastructure and systems operations to areas of regional Australia.
Professor Craig Smith, CEO of EOS Space Systems, welcomed the opportunity to work with the Australian Space Agency to help achieve Australia’s ambitions in space.
"This statement will assist Australia to grow its world-leading capabilities in space situational awareness and debris monitoring and space communications," said Professor Smith.
EOS said it is committed to growing Australia’s space sector and the workforce it requires by investing in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) initiatives. It is proud to champion the development of women in STEM roles at EOS through scholarships and workforce programs.
He added, "Our business has been at the forefront of technical innovation in space for over three decades. EOS’ success is underpinned by an exceptional skilled local workforce and collaborative partnerships across government, Australian business, academia and research institutions."
EOS said it looked forward to working closely with the Australian Space Agency, and through its position as a lead partner in the Australian government’s Space Environment Research Centre, to encourage greater collaboration between government, businesses, universities and space industry professionals.
The Australian Space Agency is transforming the space industry, with a goal to grow the Australian space economy from $3.9 billion to $12 billion and creating 20,000 new jobs by 2030.
Australia’s 10-year plan for the civil space sector will ensure our space sector can gain a larger share of the US$350 billion global space economy.
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