24 March 2023
The 2022 QuantumTX space and technology incubator program has awarded $750,000 of support to 30 companies from across Australia.
The QuantumTX incubator program helps start-ups and small-to-medium companies develop technologies and services that support remote operations, including in robotics, artificial intelligence, satellite communications, simulation, digital systems and interoperability.
Each company receives $25,000 worth of support to help scale their businesses and innovative products that demonstrate potential global competitive advantage. QuantumTX facilitates access to test sites, specialist sector expertise, technical mentors and international workshops.
Since its inception in 2018, the QuantumTX incubator program has delivered more than $3 million in support to 124 startups and SMEs across the country. The 2022 program is the largest to date.
Quantum Technology Exchange founder, Adjunct Professor Peter Rossdeutscher said participants come from across Australia and will gain access to more than 50 experts from leading companies in the space, resources, defence and technology sectors.
They will also meet with potential capital investors and collaborators, including from Fugro’s new Space Automation, Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Control Complex (SpAARC), the Roy Hill Remote Systems Automation Centre, Woodside Energy Robotics Laboratory and the International Space Centre at The University of Western Australia.
“The QuantumTX incubator program facilitates cross-cutting technologies from mining, energy and defence, into the space and advanced manufacturing sectors,” Ad. Prof. Rossdeutscher said. “The circular nature of these opportunities creates advantages, compounding returns and new jobs in all industries.”
AROSE CEO Leanne Cunnold said the QuantumTX incubator program gives SMEs and ‘scale-ups’ the opportunity to leverage and diversify their expertise into the space sector.
“Australia is at the cutting-edge of robotics technology and systems for remote operations,” Ms Cunnold said. “This capability is central to setting up a sustainable presence on the Moon, and eventually supporting human exploration of Mars.”
Ms Cunnold said that while improved safety performance is the primary motivation for industry to increasingly use remote operations, the benefits are widespread including for technology innovation, productivity, sustainability and workforce diversity.
The QuantumTX program is funded is by the Australian Government Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources through the Incubator Support Initiative. The program also receives support through remote operations collaborator AROSE and strategic innovation consultancy Atomic Sky. It has additional support from METS Ignited, Robotics Group Australia and Fugro.
QuantumTX aligns with the Australian Space Agency’s Robotics and Automation on Earth and in Space Roadmap. The growth of analytics and robotics capabilities in the resources sector alone is predicted to add an estimated A$74 billion to the Australia’s economy by 2030 and create 80,000 new jobs. At the end of this decade, the Australian space sector is planned to be around $12 billion and sustain around 30,000 jobs.