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SmartSat and NZSA Collaborate on Joint R&D Initiatives

Credit: SmartSat

Ibadan, 2 February 2024. – SmartSat Cooperative Research Center (SmartSat), has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the New Zealand Space Agency (NZSA) to accelerate the growth of Australian and New Zealand space industries. Professor Andy Koronios, SmartSat CRC Chief Executive Officer and Robyn Henderson, Acting Head of the New Zealand Space Agency, signed the agreement at the NZSA headquarters in Wellington.

Under the new agreement, SmartSat and NZSA will collaborate to develop new capabilities and expertise in the space sector through the advancement of innovation, R&D, and workforce development. Furthermore, up to NZ $6 million will be available from the NZ Government’s Catalyst Fund to support New Zealand researchers to participate in new joint research initiatives.

The new joint research initiatives will cover Earth Observation, with research projects that will aim to use space data to enhance decision-making for land and sea-based environments. It will also cover research around Space Situational Awareness and Optical Communications

Speaking on the collaboration, Professor Andy Koronios commented: “We’re happy to sign this agreement with the New Zealand Space Agency. This partnership will enable us to join forces and harness our resources and expertise for several important projects. Earth Observation research plays a critical role in better understanding environmental challenges that pose significant risks to both our countries.”

Likewise, the Head of the Australian Space Agency, Enrico Palermo, welcomed the MOU signing, saying, “This agreement reaffirms our strong partnership with New Zealand. Not only do our nations share a unique geographic position but we are also aligned when it comes to using space technology and innovation to improve life here on Earth.”

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