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