Looking up: RMIT launches Space Industry Hub

Looking up: RMIT launches Space Industry Hub

Industry experts have gathered to officially launch the RMIT Space Industry Hub and celebrate an exciting chapter of industry collaboration on applied space research.

Speaking at the event, Victoria’s Lead Scientist Dr Amanda Caples shared her vision for a Victorian space industry that creates jobs, investments and exports with future industries to underpin development.

Having been inspired by space as a young child watching Neil Armstrong land on the moon, Caples said that now was another exciting time in space and satellite technology, with the hub playing a critical role connecting local capabilities with the booming space industry both here and abroad.

“The hub is about providing a forum for industry to explore satellite data technology in a safe space with the capability that exists here at RMIT, and of course other universities across Victoria, to develop new and improved products and services,” she said.

“It allows researchers to develop insights into the problems that industry is trying to solve.”

1200x732.jpg Dr Amanda Caples, Victoria's Chief Scientist

Victorian Government and industry funding for the hub was first announced mid 2021, with this week’s event marking the official launch.

Space is a global market set to be worth more than $1 trillion by 2040, with the potential to create an additional 20,000 jobs by 2030 in Australia. It is an industry that extends to every sector of the economy, contributing to sustainable development in regional areas like enabling remote healthcare and monitoring bushfire spread, crop management and air quality.

The RMIT Space Industry Hub has been created with funding from the Victorian Higher Education Investment fund, and from partner organisation SmartSat CRC. The hub also has support from Amazon Web Services and industry engagement backing from FrontierSI.

1200.x732-peter-woodgate-gel-i magejpg.jpg Dr Peter Woodgate, Chair, SmartSAT CRC

Peter Woodgate, Chair of SmartSat CRC, hailed the hub as a significant development and an opportunity to accelerate growth and build sovereign capability in this burgeoning industry.

“In our Space Industry Skills Gap Analysis, we identified 319 skills that are needed in our workforce to grow the space industry. The SmartSat CRC will make significant investments to build these skills and higher education will be a key partner in this,” he said.

“With the formation of this hub, Victoria is taking the next step in the growth of this industry.”

Director of the RMIT Space Industry Hub, Distinguished Professor Brian Falzon, said that Victoria’s world-leading capability in aerospace engineering already underpins much of the growth in the sector and is a solid foundation on which to build on.

He also explained that RMIT University is to host the Victorian node of the SmartSat CRC.

“The Space Industry Hub, in partnership with other CRC Victorian university members – Deakin, Swinburne and LaTrobe – will act as the delivery vehicle for projects which align with the CRC’s research priorities,” he said.

Iain Rouse, Country Director, Australia and New Zealand Public Sector for Amazon Web Services (AWS), shared that speed to market is the priority, and that AWS and the cloud has a role to play in opening up access to data, given the volume of data required in space research.

“Democratisation and access to technology is a really important piece that we can bring to the hub, we’ve got a habit of inventing on behalf of our customers, and we will bring those inventions to the hub,” he said.

A critical part of the capability of the Space Industry Hub is the new cloud supercomputing facility which AWS and RMIT announced last year, driving digital innovation in research.

Jenny Mitchell, Director Civil Space Policy from the Australian Space Agency and Professor Aleks Subic, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President Digital Innovation also joined this official launch event.


Story: Kate Frazer

Find out more about the RMIT Space Industry Hub: https://www.rmit.edu.au/for-business/space-industry-hub

Connect with the RMIT Space Industry Hub team:

Distinguished Professor Brian Falzon
Director RMIT Space Industry Hub and SmartSat CRC Victorian Node

Dr Milica Symul
Associate Director RMIT Space Industry Hub



24 March 2022


24 March 2022


  • Aerospace & Aviation
  • Engineering
  • Science and technology

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Acknowledgement of Country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.