Propelling Australian electric planes
Minister for Industry and Science Ed Husic has today announced $44 million in grants for Australian companies to support 19 collaborative research projects.
These grants have been made under Round 13 of the Australian Government’s Cooperative Research Centres Projects (CRC-P) program. Cooperative Research Centres Projects support companies working to commercialise cutting-edge ideas in collaboration with researchers and innovators.
One of the 19 grant recipients, Dovetail Electric Aviation in Sydney will use its $3 million grant to develop, test and certify the conversion of turbine-powered planes into fully electrically powered aircraft.
The company says it will use the electric aircraft for short flights with an eye to develop emissions-free aircraft for use on regional routes in the future.
Minister Husic said Dovetail Electric Aviation is a great example of the high-value collaborative and industry-led research projects being supported under the CRC-P program.
“Electric aviation has the potential to be a game-changer for regional transport as Australia pushes to meet our emissions targets,” Minister Husic said.
“I am pleased to announce support for 19 outstanding projects through the CRC-P initiative to assist them progress towards commercialisation,” Minister Husic said.
“Supporting industry, researchers and end-users to work together off the back of great Australian know-how is crucial to delivering real outcomes, creating well-paid, secure jobs and backing industries to support our economy.
“Since 1991, the CRC Program has committed $5.6 billion of grant funding to support the establishment of 236 CRCs and 208 of the shorter-term CRC Projects. On top of this, program partners are contributing another $16.9 billion of cash and in kind, which is a tremendous reflection on how much the program is valued.”
Round 13 CRC-P grants involve 57 Australian companies, including 41 small and medium-sized businesses. Of the companies, about 11 per cent are in regional areas. A full list of successful projects is available on business.gov.au.
Minister Husic also announced the opening of CRC-P Round 14 today.
Round 14 will support projects with a focus on circular economy principles, as well as the National Reconstruction Fund priority areas.
The Australian Government is also taking steps to improve the operation of all CRC programs. The Government has published a schedule of future funding rounds for both the short-term CRC-P grants, and the long-term CRC grants.
“Previous governments kept industry and researchers guessing when these funding rounds would open and would make applicants race to submit applications.
“We are ending this uncertainty in applications. By producing a timetable of future grant programs we will take the guesswork out of preparation for companies looking to commercialise Australian innovation,” Minister Husic said.
“This will provide greater certainty about future CRC Program rounds and make it easier for those applying to plan and prepare their applications. By doing this, our aim is to strengthen the quality of submissions even further.”
The schedule is now available at business.gov.au/crc-p.
The CRC-P grants are awarded through a competitive, merit-based selection process, assessed by an independent committee of industry experts. The CRC-P grants support industry-led research projects, offering matched funding of between $100,000 and $3 million. Grants are for a period of up to three years.
Round 14 is open until 2 March 2023, and further information is available at business.gov.au/crc-p.