An adhesive inspired by marine molluscs and a bonding technology using magnetic nanoparticles were two of the promising innovations that emerged from a competition looking for novel ways to join materials.

Titled A Joint Effort, the competition was coordinated by Australia’s Department of Defence and the United Kingdom's (UK) Defence Science and Technology Laboratory.

Both nations used the UK’s Defence and Security Accelerator and Australia’s Small Business Innovation Research for Defence programs as a common assessment framework for the competition.

The assessors were looking for ideas that could potentially deliver one or more of three specified benefits for military platforms: improved performance through use of new material combinations or structural designs; improved durability of structures through better joints; or improved ability to maintain joints through the life of the military platform.

After four years of collaborative effort, some of the results of the competition were recently showcased in the UK to an audience of UK-based technology integrators and Defence personnel.

Australia’s Department of Defence Chief Technology Officer, Innovation and Strategic Research, Professor Michelle Gee said the Joint Effort competition delivered some truly outstanding results which could prove to be transformative in terms of Defence capability.

“The Joint Effort initiative really demonstrates what can be achieved when we collaborate with our allies to address shared challenges,” Professor Gee said.

“That collaboration has resulted in us achieving better solutions faster.”

Australia’s involvement in the initiative was funded through Defence’s Next Generation Technologies Fund, which is designed to support the development of new and emerging technologies to address Australia’s military capability requirements.

Find out more about the Joint Effort and some of the innovations that came out of it on the GOV.UK website.