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Australian Space Agency calls for local insights for future space missions

Stephen Kuper

The Australian Space Agency has called on the local space industry for information on intended or desired near-term space missions, including to the moon and beyond.

Australian Space Agency calls for local insights for future space missions
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Currently the consultation process is particularly interested in collaborating with Australia's burgeoning space industry to support a number of the agency's existing programs, including: 

  • $150 million Moon to Mars initiative, which aims to enable Australian businesses and researchers to join NASA’s inspirational plan to return to the moon and travel to Mars;
  • $19.5 million Space Infrastructure Fund, which aims to increase capability and fill gaps in Australia’s space infrastructure; and
  • $15 million International Space Investment initiative, which aims to expand the capability and capacity of our space sector.

The ASA said these plans fit with the role of the agency to "grow and transform a globally respected national space industry. We envision an industry that lifts the broader economy, inspires and improves the lives of Australians".

The ASA’s flagship program is the $150 million Moon to Mars initiative. The first program in the Moon to Mars initiative supply chain program is expected to open later in 2020.

In addition to these programs, the agency has a range of memorandums of understanding through which further opportunities for Australian industry could arise. 

The Australian Space Agency aims to grow and transform a globally respected national space industry – in order to achieve the agency's broader goal of tripling the size of the space sector to $12 billion and creating around 20,000 extra jobs by 2030, the agency is helping businesses participate in new local and global markets with funding and grant programs.

Access to space is one of the priority areas in the Australian Civil Space Strategy. There are emerging opportunities for Australia to leverage international space missions and commercial launch activities from Australian territory to support industry growth.

Protecting national safety and meeting Australia's international and national obligations will be critical before domestic launch can occur.

The consultation process closes Monday, 7 September 2020. For more information, including to make a submission, is available here

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