Adex Seoul This YearThe Australian Defence Force’s ability to operate safely in hazardous environments is being enhanced with a new national research and innovation centre dedicated to solving Operating in Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Environments (OCE) problems.

The Centre for Advance Defence Research and Enterprise – OCE (CADRE-OCE), based at the University of Melbourne, was officially opened last week. Bringing together the best academic and industry organisations, the CADRE-OCE will develop and demonstrate new concepts and technologies to protect military personnel, first responders and civilians.

Chief Defence Scientist, Professor Tanya Monro, said CADRE-OCE would mobilise the national science, technology and innovation ecosystem around challenges of scale. “CADRE-OCE is bringing together some of the best and brightest minds in academia and industry so we can protect our warfighters in Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear threat environments,” Professor Monro said. “Not only are we investing in new ideas, but we are building the STEM talent pipeline and deepening sovereign skills by investing in our future researchers and innovators.”

Under the Defence Science Partnership Deed, the Commonwealth has signed a CADRE-OCE partnership agreement with the University of Melbourne who will lead in close partnership with the University of Adelaide, Queensland University of Technology and the University of New South Wales. A further eight academic institutions and 34 industry partners from multiple sectors will support CADRE-OCE.

Professor Jia-Yee Lee, Director CADRE-OCE, said that members would collaborate based on their individual strengths and create cross-functional teams to achieve targeted outcomes. “We will join together key elements of the innovation life cycle, from laboratory experiments, to prototypes, to productisation and finally translating to Defence end-user capability,” Professor Lee said.

CADRE-OCE is funded for $4.25 million over the next five years and will work in close collaboration with the OCE Science, Technology and Research (STaR) Shot, which has been established by Defence to tackle the most ambitious OCE challenges that Australian warfighters are facing now and into the future.

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