National Research Infrastructure Scoping Studies

For: 

The Australian Government has made a significant long term commitment to support cutting edge research, with the announcement of an additional $2.2 billion investment into national research infrastructure (NRI) through the Research Infrastructure Investment Plan. This response to the recommendations and priorities outlined in the 2016 National Research Infrastructure Roadmap.

In addition to the significant additional funding to expand and enhance existing NRI activities a number of new NRI capabilities will be explored. A total of eight scoping studies will be undertaken in collaboration with key stakeholders to explore the technical requirements, existing activity that can be leveraged, implementation approaches and co-investment. Outcomes of scoping studies will be considered in future investment plans, which the Government has committed to undertake and consider every two years.

Details of the eight scoping studies are in the table below:

Scoping study

Description

Cost ($m)

Length of study

Start

Enhanced ACCESS model

Enhancing the Australian Community Climate and Earth-System Simulator (ACCESS) weather model

$0.200

12 months

2018

Synthetic biology

Explore national capability in synthetic biology through leadership in standardisation, biologics production and process automation.

$0.200

12 months

2018

National Environmental Prediction System

Explore building upon existing NRIs in environmental science to provide a national environmental prediction system.

$0.404

24 months

2018

HASS / Indigenous research platforms

To explore better integration of information in the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) and Indigenous research data platforms to maximise research outcomes, across a large and diverse group of stakeholders.

$0.866

24 months

2020

Biobanks

Explore opportunities to network Australia's biobanks across agriculture, plant science, environmental science and biomedical science into a national rather than a disparate capability.

$0.433

24 months

2020

Biosecurity

Scoping of the networked and additional capital investments required (including where) to maximise research in this area, given existing jurisdictional biosecurity research and operational measures.

$0.433

24 months

2020

Precision measurement

Scoping investments needed at the National Measurement Institute (NMI) and other key facilities to provide capability in quantum capabilities and instrumentation.

$0.219

12 months

2021

Optimisting the value of HPC through enhanced model performance

Scoping a capability to assist in the ongoing transformational development of the software base for High Performance Computing (HPC) applications, e.g. scientific models.

$0.433

24 months

2020

 

The first three scoping studies have commenced. The Government has convened expert groups to undertake the scoping studies, supported by secretariats. Details of the expert group members and contact details are below. Alternatively, or for matters related to other scoping studies, contact the department on ResearchInfrastructure@education.gov.au.

Synthetic Biology Scoping Study

The members of the reference group for this study are:

  • Professor Sakkie Pretorius (Chair) – Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), Macquarie University
  • Professor Joseph Trapani - Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
  • Dr Claudia Vickers - CSIRO Synthetic Biology Future Science Platform
  • Dr Mark Jacobs - Queensland Department of Science, Information Technology and Innovation
  • Dr Phil Wright - NSW Department of Primary Industries

This study is being supported by a secretariat function in Bioplatforms Australia (BPA). The expert group's secretariat can be contacted via BPA at: info@bioplatforms.com.

ACCESS Scoping Study

The members of the reference group for this study are:

  • Dr Greg Ayers - (Chair) - Former CEO of the Bureau of Meteorology
  • Dr Peter May - Head of Research, Bureau of Meteorology
  • Dr Helen Cleugh - Director, Climate Science Centre, CSIRO
  • Dr Ben Evans - National Computational Infrastructure (NCI)
  • Dr Tas van Ommen - Australian Antarctic Division
  • Professor Andy Pitman - ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science

This study is being supported by a secretariat function in the National Computational Infrastructure (NCI). The expert group's secretariat can be contacted via the NCI at: enquiries@nci.org.au.

National Environmental Prediction System (NEPS) Scoping Study

The members of the reference group for this study are:

  • Dr Rob Vertessy - (Chair) - Former CEO of the Bureau of Meteorology
  • Dr Andrea Hinwood - Chief Environmental Scientist, Environmental Protection Agency, Victorian Government
  • Dr Steve Morton - Honorary Professorial Fellow, Charles Darwin University
  • Dr Warwick McDonald - Research Director, CSIRO
  • Professor Bronwyn Harch - Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), University of Queensland 
  • Dr Phil McFadden AO - Former Geoscience Australia Chief Scientist
  • Dr Adam Lewis - Acting Chief Scientist, Geoscience Australia

This study is being supported by a secretariat function in the Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network (TERN). The expert group's secretariat can be contacted via TERN at tern.office@uq.edu.au.