A new international research laboratory is set to boost local and international expertise in future-relevant technologies, with Australian space industry activities being no exception.
The new partnership, titled CROSSING (shortened from French Australian Laboratory for Humans / Autonomous Agents Teaming), links up multiple research institutions, including the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS), the University of Adelaide, Flinders University, the University of South Australia and the French technological university IMT Atlantique, as well as an Australian industrial partner, Naval Group.
The research that will be generated from the collaboration is expected to have the potential to influence Australia’s space sector by opening new doors for research and development into autonomous systems, such as robotics and machine-learning software, which will become ever more important for our safety and productivity as we venture further into space for longer periods of time.
Professor Peter Høj, Vice-Chancellor and President, the University of Adelaide, says that the CROSSING lab “provides an opportunity for South Australian Universities to build strong collaborations with CNRS and European partners to apply to European as well as Australian funding schemes, and to engage with industry in Europe with CNRS collaborators.”
Aside from its acronym, CROSSING is so named because it represents the crossover of ideas between multiple organisations and disciplines, including artificial intelligence, computer science, engineering, technology, human factors and psychology - all of which are linked into the exploration of space.
Adding value to the Australian space sector, research and development to come out of CROSSING will be beneficial to space applications, such as the automation of the position, navigation and timing of naval ships and submarines, as well as research into human factors, such as psychology and sleep, that will play a key role in space medicine and life sciences research as we venture further into the Solar System and spend longer durations away from Earth as a species.