Technology Development & Acceleration

In collaboration with industry, academic and defence partners, the portfolio aims to accelerate the translation and commercialisation of leading-edge technologies and solutions to enhance Australia’s sovereign defence capabilities.

Through its Advanced Innovation Fund, the portfolio funds projects across the following five key priority areas aligned with the National Defence: Defence Strategic Review 2023.


  • quantum sensing and standards, including the development of a high-performance clock for deployment in space, high-performance quantum sensors for submarine and sub-terrain ISR, and high-performance inertial sensors and clocks for applications in GPS-denied environments
  • quantum communication, focusing on the development of space-based optical links for distributed quantum networks
  • quantum materials development, including a sovereign capability to supply isotopically enriched substrates to the Australian community
  • quantum computing, by developing quantum algorithms for defence applications and a hardware testbed for their evaluation. CSIRO will establish a national facility with the capacity to package chips including microwave and optical interconnects.

  • unique ground-based testbeds for evaluating and demonstrating hypersonic systems and subsystems including structural and material systems
  • laser-based and other directed energy systems for identifying, designating and defeating hypersonic threats
    booster technologies including separation and flight termination systems
  • ground-and space-based systems for identifying and tracking hypersonic threats, and command and control of countermeasures
  • artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning-enabled approaches for robust and adaptive control of these systems
  • vehicle subsystems including sensor windows and communications antennas sensors and diagnostics for ground and flight testing and control.

  • capabilities from diverse disciplines, spanning cyber security, AI, machine learning (ML), psychology, social sciences, and engineering
  • new techniques and technologies to combat vulnerabilities caused by the use, misuse and ‘weaponisation’ of information. New threats from state and non-state actors include malign social influence, cyber warfare and cyber-physical attacks
  • unique ways to translate existing and ongoing research on these new and emerging challenges which will deliver outcomes with direct social, economic and technological impact for defence and other sectors including in critical infrastructure, health, and energy.

  • know-how in multi-domain sensing and situational awareness for command and control of autonomous agents and homogenous and heterogeneous fleets of cooperating agents, which may include humans-on-the-loop
  • sovereign capability in autonomous systems navigation and control
  • a collaboration with the Defensive Hypersonics & Countermeasures theme to accelerate integration of AI-and ML-based approaches to robust and adaptive control of these systems within rapidly evolving environments and vehicle states.

Defence applications in collaboration with the Quantum Materials, Technologies & Computing, Defensive Hypersonics & Countermeasures and RAS-AI themes, to develop:

  • space mission program to establish an in-orbit prototyping and demonstration lab and suite of ground-based projects.
  • space technologies of relevance to Defence including sensing, processing, communications and related technologies, as well as providing mission design, engineering, and control training opportunities for Australia’s space workforce.