A new program designed to prepare businesses for the fourth industrial revolution will take place in six selected Australian universities.
The University of Queensland, the University of Technology Sydney, the University of South Australia, the University of Western Australia and Swinburne University of Technology have been chosen to participate in the pilot program.
These institutions join the University of Tasmania, which has already been allocated funding to participate in the program.
Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the Liberal National Government’s pilot program would provide small to medium sized businesses with free and open access to testlab facilities and focus on improving their skills in Industry 4.0 technologies.
The fourth industrial revolution, also known as Industry 4.0, is rapidly transforming how businesses operate and involves technologies such as advanced automation and robotics, machine-to-machine communication and sensor technology.
“The Industry 4.0 Testlabs for Australia program prepares businesses to transition to the smart factories of the future,” Minister Andrews said.
“Each testlab will receive a grant of up to $1 million and that funding will be matched by the participating universities, leveraging total investment of around $12 million.”
In addition to their world class research strengths, the universities have been selected to take advantage of their existing partnerships with industry.
The testlabs will provide spaces for researchers and industry to work together in sectors such as advanced manufacturing, developing the skills needed to take full advantage of opportunities presented by Industry 4.0.
“Evaluation of the pilot program will provide valuable insights into the success and uptake of new Industry 4.0 technologies,” Minister Andrews said.
“After the program is completed consideration will be given to implementing a broader initiative.”