As reported last week, Downer Defence Systems (DDS) is one of nine companies to have won a share in $21 millions-worth of Defence Innovation Hub contracts. DDS has won a $3 million contract as Prime Systems Integrator for a team of Australian forms to deliver the Muskito capability.
“Muskito is an integrated Counter Improvised Explosive Device (CIED) concept that will use autonomous systems and machine learning to detect threats above the ground and below the surface, and then flag them to an operator via a visual interface,” said DDS’s Executive General Manager, Andrew Foster.
“It is part of the capability requirements for Army’s LAND 154 Phase 4 – the Joint Counter Improvised Explosive Device Capability Project,” he said.
The Defence Innovation Hub contract will see DDS working as the Prime Systems Integrator with Australian industry partners Urban Circus, EPE, and Insitu Pacific to develop a Muskito prototype and then deliver a technology demonstration for Defence.
EPE’s Managing Director, Warwick Penrose, is looking forward to working with industry partners. “EPE is very pleased to partner with Downer and the Defence Innovation Hub on the Muskito program, which aligns perfectly with our focus on the delivery of Force Protection solutions,” said Penrose. “The Muskito Program will harness EPE’s CIED domain expertise, technology partners and innovative engineering to deliver a sovereign Australian capability that will protect ADF personnel deployed in non-permissive operational environments.”
Insitu Pacific’s Managing Director, Andrew Duggan, is determined to reduce casualties from IEDs. “During the time we supported the ADF with unmanned aerial ISR services in Iraq and Afghanistan, our team witnessed the destructive and devastating effects of IEDs,” said Duggan. “As a company focussed on driving innovation to solve complex problems, we welcome the opportunity to be part of this Australian team to develop a world-class counter improvised threat solution.”