Home' Defence Magazine : Issue 4 2009 Contents www.defence.gov.au/defencemagazine
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hen it comes to leading-
edge technology and
australian industry and
academia have it in spades.
Australia’s defence industry is innovative and
robust and its researchers are amongst the most
respected in the world.
But how can a new technology find its way
out of the laboratory and into an arena where
it can exhibit its potential to enhance Defence
capabilities? Enter the Capability and Technology
Demonstrator (CTD) Program.
The CTD Program, funded from the Defence
Capability Plan and managed by the Defence
Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) –
is a collaboration between industry and Defence to
deliver a demonstration of the capability potential
of a new technology.
CTD Program Director Andrew Arnold said
the Program provided the necessary funding
and project management support for industry to
develop promising proposals – proposals that can
demonstrate how a technology can significantly
enhance ADF capability
“These demonstrations allow Defence
to assess the potential advantages and risks
associated with acquiring the technology and
implementing it as a Defence capability,” Mr
Established in 1997, the CTD Program has
funded more than 85 technologies proposed by
universities, government bodies, small-to-medium
enterprises (SMEs) and larger established industry
Promoting industry capability
While the primary purpose of the CTD Program
is to examine the technology of Australian industry,
there have been some examples of significant
DSTO technology being developed in partnership
An example of DSTO-developed technology
successfully licensed to industry and exploited
under the CTD Program for mutual benefit is the
Joint Direct Attack Munition – Extended Range
The Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) is
a tail kit that converts free-fall unguided bombs
into precision-guided weapons. The tail section
contains a GPS/INS guidance system that directs
the JDAM bomb to the selected target.
Enabling the 500-pound JDAM-guided
weapon to glide towards long-range targets is
the JDAM–ER wing kit, developed by Hawker de
Havilland under the auspices of the CTD Program
and based on DSTO technology.
The range of the launch aircraft’s fire-and-
forget capability can be extended to in excess of
55 kilometres, allowing the JDAM–ER to launch
at a safe distance from the target.
“After two successful demonstrations,
first under the CTD Program and then under the
new CTD Extension Program, the JDAM–ER is
now being considered for final development for
commercial production, which will lead to an
operational product,” Mr Arnold said.
“The JDAM–ER Program is an excellent
example of how DSTO-sourced technology can
lead to ongoing collaborative activity and the
development of an effective Defence product.”
Through the CTD Program, DSTO played a
significant role in creating jobs, especially in the
high technology and advanced engineering areas.
The Program provided good support for several
The cTD process
The CTD Program runs on an annual
cycle, starting around April each year. Defence
announces the opening of a new round of funding
and calls for initial proposals from industry. These
initial proposals are evaluated by Capability
Development Group (CDG), the Defence Material
Organisation and DSTO against a range of
assessment criteria, and promising projects are
allocated a sponsor (usually a subject matter
expert from CDG) to consult in the preparation of a
In order to be considered for progression to
contract as a demonstrator, proposals must satisfy
each of the following criteria:
potential to provide a new or enhanced
capability to Defence
potential to transition into service
demonstrated high degree of technical
innovation of strategic importance to Defence
potential to enhance Australian Industry
DeFenCe sCIenCe AnD teCHnoLogY oRgAnIsAtIon
awareness of project management
considerations, including associated costs
Following submission of the detailed
proposals, usually around November, the CTD
Review Group assesses and ranks the projects.
The Defence Capability Committee later nominates
the proposals that will receive funding, and makes
a recommendation to the Minister for Defence
to review in March. The final list of successful
projects is usually announced around April or May,
and proposals can expect to be contracted for
demonstration and receive funding in July.
It is important to note that the CTD Program
is not a grants program, nor is it a guarantee of
future work or Defence acquisition. Transition to
capability is influenced by several factors, including
the successful demonstration of the technology in
line with agreed target performance measures, the
technical maturity of the demonstrated technology,
and its alignment with a Defence capability need.
1. a counter-improvised explosive device
robot uses technology to provide tactile
feedback to a remote operator, enabling
them to ‘feel’ suspicious objects and interact
with them from a safe distance.
2. staff cadet andrew rodwell holds a steyr
rifle during a recent DsTo industry day.
3. gavin gregson, from Iatia in melbourne,
with a camera that enables soldiers to
see through smoke, fog and debris, as
well as other visual impairments such as
from the laboratory
to the battleground
By Brooke Sharpley
cTD success stories
The CTD Program has successfully helped
the transition of sonar interception technology
into operational service. The Low Probability of
Intercept Sonar project, developed by Nautronix,
has already transitioned into service with the Navy.
The technology aims to ensure that there is a low
probability that sonar transmissions from naval
vessels will be intercepted and/or recognised by
Several other CTD projects have also
been selected for further development towards
implementation under the new CTD Extension
Program. One of these success stories is a
counter-improvised explosive device robot being
developed in collaboration with Deakin University.
The technology aims to provide tactile feedback to a
remote operator, enabling them to ‘feel’ suspicious
objects and interact with them from a safe distance.
Another new capability emerging from the
CTD Program is a camera that enables soldiers
to see through smoke, fog and debris, as well as
other visual impairments such as camouflage. Iatia,
a small Melbourne-based company, demonstrated
how the camera could exploit the way light
interacts with matter and produce a clearer image.
Investing in the future
“In these difficult economic times, it is
important for Defence to continue to support
Australian industry by investing in local small-to-
medium enterprises,” Mr Arnold said.
Since its inception, the CTD Program has seen
more than $190 million invested into furthering
technology and innovation in Australian industry,
with a further $11 million soon to be allocated
to the successful 2009/10 Round 13 projects.
Additionally, the new CTD Extension Program will
see another $10 million per year invested in fast-
tracking successfully demonstrated CTDs toward
acquisition in high-priority areas.
“The program also has a number of funding
initiatives aimed at assisting SMEs with the costs
of defining their concepts and preparing detailed
proposals,” Mr Arnold said.
“Collectively, these initiatives help to ensure
that smaller Australian industry members have a
fair opportunity to participate in the Program, and
retain a competitive edge in the global market.
“The CTD Program plays a crucial role in
ensuring Australian industry, particularly SMEs, as
well as government agencies and universities have
a chance to exhibit their research in a way that best
demonstrates how it can be of value to Defence.”
Through the Capability and Technology
Demonstrator Program, ADF users are able
to see how leading edge technology can be
integrated quickly into existing, new, enhanced or
replacement high-priority capabilities.
For further information on the cTD
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