Proposals are sought from academia and industry to develop next-generation prototypes and key subsystems of phased array antennas.

The Next Generation Technologies Fund Multi-Function Aperture (MFA) program is putting out the call for interested industry and academic organisations to join the MFA team, assisting the development of Australian-based and sovereign capabilities. 

These antennas are to be capable of simultaneously supporting multiple radio frequency functions being transmitted and received over a wide-frequency band.

The program has been designed in three phases, intended to run over at least a five-year period.

MFA program leader Jeff McCarthy said the first phase of the program was supported by five Australian universities under a multi-party collaborative agreement.

“This phase develops the core concepts, addressing key science and technology challenges and retiring risk to set up foundational technology pathways in the next phase,” Dr McCarthy said.

The first phase will end in February next year.

“This second phase of the program intends to extend the research effort underpinned by and re-focused towards industrial research capabilities and development,” Dr McCarthy said.

“This will require significant industry engagement and close collaboration with university partners to transform concepts from the first phase into technologies that can be readily scaled and integrated.

“This outcome will set up the third phase to develop a fully capable, multi-function aperture evaluation demonstrator to assess how the new technology can be exploited in future force in-being.”

Defence Science and Technology Group invites interested parties to register for an industry briefing to be held via Microsoft Teams on October 7 at 10.30am (Adelaide time).

Nominations to attend the briefing are to be forwarded in writing to the MFA mailbox: MFA-NGTF [at] dst.defence.gov.au 

In your nomination, please provide your: full name, organisation, position, telephone number, and email address of all nominated personnel.

Submissions for the second phase can be made via AusTender

Proposers are to direct any questions or concerns to MFA-NGTF [at] dst.defence.gov.au and can do so up until five working days prior to the closing time. 

The call for proposals closes at 2pm (AEDT) on November 18.