Australian National University has taken an advantage of their vice-chancellor’s firepower after Brain Schmidt, a Noble Prize winner astronomer, to make a claim in the nation’s rebooted space industry.
Schmidt said, ANU was all set to have a significant part to support a new space agency in the nation which is reported to support financially by £28 million (A$50 million) of seed funding in national budget that will be declared on 8 May, 2018.
During an assembly of international astronautical held last September in Adelaide, the government has displayed its intention to build a domestic space agency. In 1950s, Australia had a leading space industry in the world. However, they couldn’t flourish it, which being the primary cause of the nation’s scientists’ unhappiness, especially after the launch of New Zealand’s Space Agency in 2016.
As per the leaded media report, Megan Clark, the former chief of Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, will lead the space agency in its first year. Even though the government representatives hadn’t confirmed the news, however, funding is unexpected for the university.
Prof. Brain Schmidt said that ANU has hosted the key nation space resources and had a huge capacity to assist the new agency with its sheer expertise in law, policy and science.
He further said, ‘As the country’s university, we are hoping to play a crucial role in the establishment of the agency.’
Last year, Dr Megan Clark was the head of committee which is formed by the Government to review the capability of Australia’s space industry. Though the report by the team has been submitted to the government in February, but it has not been published yet.
Anna Moore, member of the panel, director of Advanced Instrumentation Technology Centre (ANU) stated the funds are enough to establish a new space agency.
She added, the nation owns a 0.8% of global space industry, which is worth £294 billion (A$400 billion) per year and is growing rapidly. ‘We should attain 1.8%, as this is where our GDP is.’