Building Australian Capability
DMTC’s Industry Capability Development Program aims to create a network of ‘Defence-ready’ companies with benchmarked, globally competitive capabilities. The program aims to foster collaboration between local small- to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and also build a critical mass of local capability that can be presented to prime contractors for major Defence projects.
This is ultimately about enhancing Defence capability but, significantly, is also about building industrial capacity in regions across Australia.
Building on previous capacity-building successes in areas such as CNC machining and additive manufacturing (3D printing), current efforts focus on enhancing the welding capabilities of companies wishing to enter into defence industry supply chains.
The program includes benchmarking and skills and technology transfer opportunities.
The welding and fabrication program, which began in Victoria’s Latrobe Valley, has been extended into new programs in Mackay (Qld) and the Illawarra (NSW) – thanks to funding commitments from the respective State Governments.
Planning is underway to run similar programs in Tasmania and South Australia in 2017.
DMTC is also planning future activities in other specific manufacturing techniques and technologies, for example to enhance Australian industrial capability in areas such as corrosion management and additive manufacturing.
The 2016 Defence Industry Policy Statement affirms the importance of effective collaboration between primes and companies in their supply chains, as a key contributor to a sustainable and competitive Australian defence industry sector.
A DMTC project team has been working with several SMEs in Victoria’s Latrobe Valley region to enhance capabilities in the welding of high-strength steels.
Supported by Latrobe City Council, this benchmarking exercise has the potential to open up significant new opportunities for manufacturers from the region to participate in future Defence projects, and has provided a greater understanding of maritime and submarine fabrication applications.
Participants gain exposure to innovative technologies, best practice techniques and processes and insights into quality, safety and certification standards expected by Defence.