Innovative companies get $23m funding injection

SENATOR Kim Carr, Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, recently announced 40 Australian projects which will receive $23.6 million from the latest announcements of Commercial Ready and Commercialising Emerging Technologies (COMET) grants funding.

SENATOR Kim Carr, Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, recently announced 40 Australian projects which will receive $23.6 million from the latest announcements of Commercial Ready and Commercialising Emerging Technologies (COMET) grants funding.

The projects included funding to Desaln8, which was awarded a $579,110 Commercial Ready grant to develop a small desalination system which operates entirely within a borehole, selectively extracting freshwater from poor quality groundwater.

“Desaln8, in Victoria, has designed and developed a desalination process that takes moderately saline, brackish or poor quality groundwater, removes the salt content and pumps the fresh water to the surface for use,” Senator Carr said.

“Trials will be carried out around Australia and in India to determine the capability of the system, and improve it to handle a variety of complications due to membrane fouling and variations in subsurface conditions.”

Other companies awarded innovation grants include:

  • H20 Hive Holdings, of Ormeau (Qld) — a $64,000 COMET grant to market a rainwater storage system built into the foundations of any building with a concrete slab.
  • JRB Engineering, of Perth, — a $2,994,411 Commercial Ready grant to develop its one-stop-shop, automatic inspection system for rail vehicles and associated infrastructure. Devices will monitor trains and track infrastructure using electronic, thermographics and videos, and a back-end IT system to collect, analyse, store and deliver data to users’ sites via radio, the internet and mobile phone.
  • Intelligent Plastic, Coffs Harbour (NSW) — a $64,000 COMET grant to commercialise intelligent plastic sensors that can measure changes in foods, blood, blood products, human health and fitness, and the environment.

A list of the latest innovation grants can be found at www.ausindustry.gov.au