Australia

Adelaide beats stiff competition to host Australia's new space agency

0:00

Adelaide has been selected by the federal government as the location for the new Australian Space Agency with the premier declaring it the ideal location.

Australia's new space agency will be based in Adelaide, reinforcing South Australia as a hub for innovation and technology, Prime Minister Scott Morrison says.

The PM says the Australian space sector is set to reach new heights and the agency will open doors for local businesses to access the $US345 billion global space industry.

"Our government's $41 million investment into the agency will act as a launching pad to triple Australia's space economy to $12 billion and create up to 20,000 jobs by 2030," Mr Morrison said.

"This agency is part of our plan for a stronger economy for South Australia and the country which is about delivering long-term, high-wage, high-skills jobs."

Prime Minister Scott Morrison speaks during the Whyalla Big Reveal at Ada Ryan Gardens, Whyalla, South Australia, Monday, December 10, 2018.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison speaks during the Whyalla Big Reveal at Ada Ryan Gardens, Whyalla, South Australia, Monday, December 10, 2018.
COURTNEY HEWETT

Premier Steven Marshall said South Australia was the ideal location for the space agency with a range of local businesses already established along with a rapidly growing defence sector.

"Establishing the headquarters of the Australian Space Agency in South Australia will launch our space and defence sectors to the next level," he said.

Federal Industry, Science and Technology Minister Karen Andrews said Adelaide was selected to host the agency after putting forward the strongest case.

"South Australia is already home to more than 60 organisations and 800 employees in the space sector and this decision builds on the very strong technology and defence presence in the state," she said.

0:00

"We are committed to growing Australia's space sector and our government is also investing $260 million to develop world-leading satellite capabilities and to significantly increase GPS accuracy in our cities and regional areas."

The Australian Space Agency will be located at Lot Fourteen on the old Royal Adelaide Hospital site by mid-2019, creating 20 jobs.

South Australia's connection to the space industry dates back to just after World War II with the Woomera Rocket Range established in the state's north in 1947.

NASA astronaut Andy Thomas studied at the University of Adelaide and was instrumental in landing the agency for his home state. 

Now there’s fresh hope those like him won’t have to move abroad to set their sights on space.

"I hope we’ll see some of our other graduates from the university who are currently working in the space industry overseas actually coming back to Adelaide," he told SBS News. 

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch