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Harbour security a priority for new defence research facility.

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THE HON. WARREN SNOWDON MP Minister for Defence Science and Personnel

Tuesday, 19 August 2008 114/2008


Safeguarding Australia’s harbours and port facilities from terrorist threats will be the focus of new research by the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) in Sydney, the Minister for Defence Science and Personnel, the Hon. Warren Snowdon MP, said today.

Speaking at the opening of DSTO’s new research facility at the Australian Technology Park in Redfern, Mr Snowdon said advanced simulation laboratories and state-of-the-art equipment in the new facility would enable DSTO to assess security risks at our seaports, explore threat scenarios and develop measures to counteract them.

“The security of our ports is critical to the Australian economy,” Mr Snowdon said.

“DSTO is using sophisticated visualisation software representing Sydney Harbour, Port Botany and the Port of Brisbane to scan for security weaknesses and improve situational awareness.

“This maritime security research program builds on DSTO’s world-class capability in maritime operations analysis, mine warfare and coastal warfare systems.”

The new facility will also assist Navy in its future maritime program involving the three planned Air Warfare Destroyers and two amphibious ships - the largest assets ever to be operated by the Australian Navy.

“The government is keen to ensure that DSTO facilities are fully geared to meet the operational needs of Defence, with access to modern technology and leading edge capabilities,” Mr Snowdon said.

“For 100 years now our defence scientists have proven they can deliver innovative technology solutions for the ADF, including some world-leading developments in science.”

Mr Snowdon mentioned the Jindalee Over-the-Horizon radar, Barra sonobuoy, Nulka anti-ship missile decoy, the Australian minesweeping system, the LADS laser hydrographic survey tool, the black box flight recorder, aircraft fatigue testing and composite bonded repair technology as some of DSTO’s most famous inventions.

To mark the opening of DSTO Sydney Mr Snowdon launched a book on the history of defence science (A Century of Australian Defence Science) and a companion volume on DSTO’s Top Ten Science & Technology Reports.

Media contacts: Kate Sieper (Mr Snowdon) 02 6277 7620 or 0488 484 689 Jimmy Hafesjee (DSTO) 02 6128 6376 or 0404 042 457 Defence Media Liaison 02 6265 3343 or 0408 498 664