Researchers at The University of Western Australia have been awarded a share of $39.5 million dollars in grants as part of the Australian Government’s Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities scheme for 2023.
The Government announced 45 successful applicants for next year’s grants including projects at UWA as diverse as improving understanding of the Constitution and the development of a Space Surveillance Hub.
A project which aims to transform the Zadko Observatory into a Space Surveillance Hub north of Perth was awarded $280,000.
Associate Professor David Coward, from UWA’s School of Physics, Maths and Computing, said it would benefit major national and international users and commercial partners and current infrastructure would be replaced with more modern equipment.
“The expected outcomes of this project is to improve the contribution of the facility to Australia’s strategic Space Program specifically for space situational awareness and deep space imaging,” Associate Professor Coward said.
A team based at UWA’s School of Molecular Sciences was awarded $390,000 for a facility that will help to develop safe herbicides to help increase food production.
Professor Charles Bond said the project would provide WA with cutting edge crystallisation facilities to examine the structures of biological and chemical materials.
A collaborative project, which includes academics from UWA’s Law School, was awarded $319,000 to simplify the task of understanding the Australian Constitution and create an online archive.
Associate Professor Murray Wesson said the project would provide an accessible means to decipher the proposals, drafts and votes by which the Constitution was formed.
“This will provide significant benefits not only to constitutional law scholars and historians but also schoolteachers and students seeking to reconstruct the process by which our Constitution was formed,” Associate Professor Wesson said.
A project working to establish a national facility for performance characterisation of infra-red technologies was awarded $690,000. The facility will include state-of-the-art capabilities to measure electronic and electro-optic noise phenomena.
Professor Paul Low, from UWA’s School of Molecular Sciences, said the new facility will draw together a team from across Australia to enhance the nation’s sovereign capability in infra-red imaging and sensing and in turn will support activity across areas from defence to environmental monitoring.