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Defence industry funding for geospatial intelligence projects

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The Australian defence industry companies are being invited to apply for funding to support the provision of geospatial‑intelligence products to Defence and Government customers.

The Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation (AGO), a Defence intelligence agency, is partnering with a Victorian not-for-profit company to deliver the second instalment of a program supporting the development of Australia’s vital geospatial-intelligence capabilities.

The AGO Analytics Labs program is designed to directly deliver insights to the AGO and aims to complement other successful Defence innovation initiatives, such as the Defence Innovation Hub.

Minister for Defence Industry, Melissa Price said the partnership with FrontierSI intended to improve AGO’s understanding of modern artificial intelligence and data analytics methods for mapping and imagery.

“This is about establishing new framew

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orks for engagement, strengthening partnerships and raising the awareness of industry and academia to the challenges and capability requirements of our geospatial community,” Minister Melissa said.

After the success of the pilot in 2019, the program has been expanded to include at least six potential sub-contracts valued up to $150,000 each, and split over two challenge rounds.

Round one of the program involves industry addressing an initial three unclassified and emergent capability challenges, via small-scale research projects and concept demonstrators.

This marks the start of the proposal submission period of the second iteration of the AGO Analytics Labs program, with all round one responses due back to FrontierSI by 11 December 2020.

Sub-contracts, through FrontierSi, will be awarded in January 2021 and will run for about six months.

They will involve participants working with AGO subject matter experts to demonstrate how modern technologies can potentially be used in the provision of geospatial‑intelligence products.

“I am pleased to invite innovative Australian and New Zealand companies to submit project proposals that explore novel solutions to unclassified, but pertinent, challenges. AGO’s partnership with industry experts, such as FrontierSI, reinforces the Morrison Government’s commitment to supporting Australia’s world-leading and critical innovation sector, ” Minister Melissa said.

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