Australia’s R&D facilities get fresh Budget funding

16 May 2013

Australia will invest $230 million in its peak science body, CSIRO, to attract more international research and development, underscoring Australia’s reputation for innovation.

The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) investment is part of the Government’s commitment handed down earlier this week in its 2013-14 Budget.

The Budget contains a provision for CSIRO to upgrade its facilities at Clayton, Victoria, and Black Mountain, ACT.  At Clayton, CSIRO and Monash University are collaborating on an innovation centre, Factories of the Future. The Black Mountain upgrade will underpin its agricultural science research.

Australia’s research into marine science and nuclear medicine will also get more funding. 

The Australian Institute of Marine Science in Townsville will receive more than $30 million to support the environmental performance of marine industries, which are projected to double in value by 2025, according to the Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research, Craig Emerson.  

The funding will also support the state-of-the-art National Tropical Sea Simulator facility, which will position Townsville as a global research hub, he said.

In Sydney, the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) will receive $8.1 million, in addition to the $432 million the Government has invested.

The reactor supplies neutrons for research into climate change and water resource management. It also produces 20 per cent of the world's irradiated silicon and 85 per cent of Australia's nuclear medicines, used to diagnose heart disease and cancer.

“An increase in OPAL's operations also means more material will be provided to our $168.8 million nuclear medicine manufacturing facility, where production will triple,” Dr Emerson said.

“This will cement ANSTO as one of the world’s major nuclear medicine suppliers,” he said in a statement.