Australian Space Manufacturing Network fuels up with $52 million grant

Australian Space Manufacturing Network fuels up with $52 million grant

A render of ASMN's proposed advanced manufacturing facility (provided by Gilmour Space).

An advanced manufacturing facility for building rockets and satellites in Australia is one step closer to reality thanks to a $52 million grant awarded to the Australian Space Manufacturing Network (ASMN).

According to ASMN leader Gilmour Space, the Federal Government grant will co-fund its $157 million bid to build the facility, as well as a portion of the proposed Bowen Orbital Spaceport at Abbot Point, Queensland.

“This is big news for our ASMN partners, and for commercial space in Australia,” Gilmour Space CEO Adam Gilmour said.

“Rockets and satellites are key enablers of the global space economy. The co-funding will provide timely support for emerging space manufacturers to develop and mature significant space capabilities in Australia. 

“Details have yet to be provided, but we and our ASMN partners intend to leverage on this grant to engage in the full spectrum of space activities, from research and development to advanced manufacturing and launch. These efforts will help grow the industry and deliver real civil, commercial and defence benefits for the nation.”

ASMN is an industry-led network of 31 space companies that aim to grow the sector’s capabilities, helping projects go all the way from initial concepts to commercialisation and finally to launch on home soil.

Over the next five years, ASMN hopes the project will support more than 850 new jobs, including 350 space manufacturers in highly skilled engineering and technical roles.

Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said the Federal Government’s investment in the project will help unlock further collaboration between small and medium businesses and researchers to see launch vehicles and satellites take off to space.

“Australia’s space sector has already taken leaps and bounds and is globally recognised. The race is on in the $600 billion global space economy and the Australian Space Manufacturing Network will help cement the incredible opportunities for local companies to be part of the excitement of launch,” Minister Taylor said.  

“From testing to manufacture, to assembly and finally launch, this project will harness great Aussie know-how to attract further private investment and create hundreds of high-skilled and high-value jobs. This is a big win for Queensland jobs.

“Through the work of the Australian Space Agency we already know that space technologies are playing an increasingly important role on earth, supporting navigation systems which draw on them in our cars and smartphones and by farmers to monitor the health of their crops.”

The $52 million grant is part of the Federal Government’s $1.3 billion Modern Manufacturing Initiative, which provides co-funding for Australian manufacturers with grants of between $20 million to $200 million.

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