The University of Technology Sydney (UTS) today formally opened its latest state-of-the-art research facility, UTS Tech Lab. The purpose-built, $65 million facility is spread across 9000 m2 on a site in the industrial hub of Botany that neighbours Sydney Airport, and which is in close proximity to a major new technology and innovation precinct recently announced by the NSW Government.
Tech Lab will focus on transdisciplinary research that provides new services to industry, with capabilities that span, but are not limited to, civil and environmental engineering, mechanical and mechatronic engineering, software, electrical and data engineering, systems, management and leadership.
“Over coming decades, Australian business and industry will be transformed — as will the Australian workforce. It’s critical that universities work hand in hand with industry to ensure we capitalise on the opportunities — and address the challenges — this presents,” said UTS Vice-Chancellor Professor Attila Brungs. “Facilities like Tech Lab will allow us to do that.”
The Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology (FEIT) at UTS, Professor Ian Burnett, said UTS is already known for its engagement and partnership with industry “but Tech Lab adds new, state-of-the-art facilities that will attract companies and researchers from around the globe to work on new projects in engineering and digital transformation”.
“UTS Tech Lab is a unique research facility in Australia, where academics and researchers from diverse fields will work in tandem with industry and government to develop innovative solutions for the world of tomorrow, taking new technologies from early readiness to commercial viability,” he said.
Tech Lab will cater to a wide range of companies, from big to small, including working with start-ups. “It will continue to build on Australia’s research strengths and bring industry and academia together to deliver the most technologically advanced products and services. This will provide impact for our partners and jobs for our students and the wider community,” he continued.
Tech Lab will offer R&D projects, consultancy, contract work and short courses. It is equipped with state-of-the-art capabilities that include, among other things:
- an electromagnetic informatics and antenna chamber
- data analytics, networking and communications
- photonics and optical sensing
- full-scale structural dynamics facilities
- materials testing and characterisation
- a geotechnical lab
- acoustics laboratories, including anechoic chambers
- an electrical power and energy lab
- a multimedia lab for computational intelligence and brain computer interface.
UTS Tech Lab has already welcomed organisations such as Sydney Water, which will work with the facility in robotics and smart sensing in pipelines, as well as Nokia, which will run training courses out of the facility. Tech Lab is also in discussion with many other companies interested in working with UTS in the new facility, especially in areas such as smart cities, Internet of Things (IoT) and advanced manufacturing.
The NSW Government recently announced a new technology and innovation precinct in the corridor from the Central Station area in Sydney city, where UTS is based, through to Eveleigh, a suburb just north of Botany. This corridor is home to Australia’s largest cluster of start-up firms.