Personnel Survivability concept floated

The Defence Materials Technology Centre (DMTC) is investigating an opportunity to create a new research program in Personnel Survivability.

DMTC develops and delivers new materials technologies and manufacturing processes to enhance Australia’s defence capability by adopting a collaborative approach between Defence, defence industries and research agencies.

The Centre currently has four research programs – air platforms, maritime platforms, propulsion systems and armour applications.

“At the current stage of DMTC’s business cycle, personnel survivability presents a logical and timely extension of current activities, given that Defence demand for solider protection technologies has greatly expanded as a result of recent operational experience,” DMTC CEO Dr Mark Hodge said.

Should the concept be supported, program activity would be driven directly by existing defence capability requirements as articulated in the 2009 Defence White Paper and directly to DMTC, Dr Hodge said.

He said the idea of a Personnel Survivability program had attracted significant interest from defence industry in a very short space of time, but would need further support from industry and the Commonwealth to get off the ground.

DMTC hopes to develop the opportunity to exploit materials and manufacturing technologies and systems through advancement, adaptation and integration of personal protection and signature management technologies.  This offers the potential to enhance or maintain individual protection whilst minimising the characteristics with the potential to further burden the individual, such as weight, bulk and poor utility while maintaining or reducing life cycle cost and providing better sustainment outcomes by improving modularity and upgradability. 

The new program would span four areas of research and development, to include Ballistic, blast and flash protection; Signature reducing characteristics; Utility, fit and comfort and; Environmental (protection from airborne threats to personnel including Chemical/Biological/Radiation and thermal conditions).

DMTC would like to hear from industry or research sector parties interested in partnering with DMTC on this activity, and encourages them to contact head office without delay.  Industry briefings will be held throughout August and September to fully develop the concept before further discussions with Defence are held.

For further information or to register interest in becoming a participant, please contact DMTC on +61 3 9214 4447.


Posted by DMTC on August 10th, 2009