ANU-German space partnership takes off

29 September 2017

Days after the Government announced a new Australian Space Agency, The Australian National University (ANU) is taking things up a notch by signing a new agreement with the German space agency and space Centre DLR (Deutsches Zentrum fuer Luft Raumfahrt).

ANU Vice-Chancellor Professor Brian Schmidt said the collaboration between ANU and a leading international space agency would help boost the role of ANU and Australia's space industries internationally.

"The collaboration positions the University as a leading institution at the forefront of Australia's development of space technology and research," he said.

"We are already collaborating closely with many researchers based in Germany and I hope this MOU will open up new opportunities to make a positive impact through research and development."

The MOU between ANU and DLR was signed by Professor Schmidt and Chairwoman of the DLR Executive Board Professor Pascale Ehrenfreund, Director of the ANU Advanced Instrumentation and Technology Centre Professor Anna Moore and Professor Hansjörg Dittus, Executive Board Member for Germany's Space Research and Technology.

The potential cooperation opportunities in space related fields include:

  • Physics and engineering research using the ANU Advanced Instrumentation Technology Centre (AITC) space test facilities;
  • Development of compact, inexpensive hyperspectral imaging payloads;
  • Research and development for the next generation of fast, low-noise infrared detectors;
  • Lightweight/low cost strategies for 2metre + class optical and infra-red telescopes;
  • Adaptive optics and guidestar lasers;
  • Free space optical communications;
  • Satellite tracking and imaging and space debris tracking and deflection; and
  • Personnel exchanges.