THE Australian Maritime College has received $3.8 million in federal and industry funding to help develop the national naval manufacturing industry.
The funding is a combination of $2.4 million from the Australian Research Council's Industrial Transformation Training Centres scheme and $1.4 from industry contributions.
The college's project chief investigator, Jonathan Binns, said that as part of the first phase of the project, some of the funding would be spent on the employment of 10 higher degree research students and three post- doctoral fellows to undertake research and training in an industrial environment.
This would take the form of three major defence projects: the SEA1000 or future submarine venture, which will cost the Australian government $30 billion over the next 20 years; the SEA500, which is for a frigate contract; and the SEA1180, which includes patrol boats.
"Australia's navy building program is set to become the largest commitment this nation has ever made to defence," Dr Binns said.
"The success of these major projects is reliant on developing research to solve the key manufacturing industry questions.
"The training centre will create a new network of engineering researchers that will enable the Australian naval manufacturing industry to more rapidly innovate."
AMC principal Professor Neil Bose said the projects would have far- reaching benefits and the submarine contract alone would be the largest engineering project in Australia.
The project is a collaboration between the University of Tasmania, University of Wollongong and Flinders University and six companies.