Aussie defence companies urged to apply for AGO Labs program

Wednesday, 18 November, 2020

Aussie defence companies urged to apply for AGO Labs program

Australian defence industry companies are encouraged to apply for funding to support the provision of geospatial intelligence products to Defence and government customers. The Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation (AGO) is partnering with a FrontierSI, a Victorian not-for-profit company, to deliver the second instalment of the AGO Analytics Labs program that supports the development of Australia’s geospatial intelligence capabilities.

The program is designed to 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 is intended to improve AGO’s understanding of modern artificial intelligence and data analytics methods for mapping and imagery.

Following the success of the pilot in 2019, the program has been expanded to include six potential subcontracts 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 is about establishing new frameworks for engagement, strengthening partnerships and raising the awareness of industry and academia to the challenges and capability requirements of our geospatial community,” said Minister Price.

A proposal submission period for the second iteration of the AGO Analytics Labs program has commenced, with all round one responses due back to FrontierSI by 11 December 2020. FrontierSI will award subcontracts in January 2021, which will run for about six months.

This 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,” said Minister Price.

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