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Prime awards scholarships to Australian professors

northrop grumman unsw grant
L to R: NSW Defence Advocate John Harvey, Professor Mark Hoffman of UNSW, Johnathon Green of Northrop Grumman, scholarship winner Associate Professor Robert Malaney of UNSW, and Eric Rienke of Northrop Grumman.

Three Australian academics will have their multi-year research projects supported by a defence prime, securing initial grants of $75,000.

The grants, awarded by Northrop Grumman, will support interdisciplinary research across engineering, quantum communications, human machine interactions and cognitive radio systems.

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The three academics to receive the grants are Robert Malaney, associate professor, University of New South Wales; Roberto Sabatini, professor, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology; and Tansu Alpcan, associate professor, University of Melbourne.

Malaney's research will look at quantum communication via low-orbit satellites, which he said has potential to offer a paradigm shift in telecommunications.

"This emerging technology has potential to provide unparalleled communication security and also lead us into the development of the global quantum internet," he said.

"Our research work will lead to state-of-the-art quantum communication protocols that can optimise secure communication over very large distances."

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Sabatini is completing research in cognitive human-machine interfaces and interactions, while Alpcan is completing research in situation-aware cognitive radio network using machine and deep learning.

Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham announced the awards at Parliament House and said the research projects are crucial to enhancing Australian research and industry.

"As the speed of technological change rapidly increases, it’s critical that we continue to support research and development and embrace innovation," said Minister Birmingham.

"Investment and collaboration from private sector partners like Northrop Grumman is key to ensuring the outstanding research of Australian academics is closely linked to industry."

Northrop Grumman Australia chief executive Ian Irving said the C4ISR and strike specialist will continue to invest in more research and development programs in Australia.

"The professorial scholarships are a continuation of Northrop Grumman’s collaboration with academic institutions in Australia," said Irving.

"We will continue to invest in research and development programs in order to support the development of advanced technologies in Australia, increase the capability of our defence industry and to assist the development of science, technology, engineering and mathematics that help develop a capable future workforce."

Northrop Grumman recently landed a $200 million contract for the through-life-support of the Royal Australian Air Force C-27J Spartan Battlefield Airlifter fleet.

Prime awards scholarships to Australian professors
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