Leonardo Australia and University to commercialise space technology developed at Melbourne Space Laboratory

Leonardo Australia Managing Director Giorgio Mantegazza and University of Melbourne Vice-Chancellor Professor Duncan Maskell signing the MoU for cooperation on space projects.

Leonardo Australia, the Australian subsidiary of Leonardo, and the University of Melbourne have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to collaborate on research projects related to new space technology developed at the Melbourne Space Laboratory (MSL).

MSL is developing a thermal management and control system that improves the performance of remote sensing and satellite tracking and detection systems, specifically for applications for defence (Space Domain Awareness), emergency management (wildfires) and sustainable economic development (climate change).

The collaboration between the two parties aims to design, prototype, and qualify an improved payload (carrying capacity) in a space environment, with the possibility to integrate and enhance Leonardo products such as the Infrared Detectors and Hyperspectral Sensors.

Leonardo Australia Managing Director, Giorgio Mantegazza, said: “The MoU reflects a continuation of Leonardo's strategy for the space domain in Australia, offering best-in-class solutions while tapping into world-class resident research and development capabilities such as MSL and their expertise to develop new space-based solutions for remote sensing, space domain awareness and scientific applications.

“This collaboration aligns with the Australian Space Agency's mandate to triple the size of the local industry to 30,000 locally employed space professionals by 2030 and also aligns with the intent of the Australian-UK "SpaceBridge" initiative.”

University of Melbourne researcher and Director of the Melbourne Space Laboratory, Professor Michele Trenti, said: "Leonardo has an outstanding track record of collaboration with European research institutions to develop innovative space instrumentation.

“We are excited to have the opportunity to work with Leonardo Australia to bring to market MSL IP and to grow capabilities for development of ambitious space projects in Victoria."