February 23, 2024

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Smart pack EV to Revive South Australian Automotive Industry

Australia Smart Pack EV
Photo Credit: Flinders University

A research agreement between Flinders University and a German and Taiwanese backed start-up may lead to the manufacturing and construction of a novel, flat-pack electric vehicle in Australia, using local components and ingenuity.

As reported, the University will be bringing its Research and Development support in this collaboration with the company, in order for the company to reach its goal of boosting Australian content in the design and manufacturing of the company’s recently launched small, modern electric van in the country.

The Partnership

The Director of the University’s Australian Industrial Transformation Institute explained that the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) seeks to harness Flinders’ R&D expertise in support of the manufacture of this EV under licence here in Australia.

It represents an important step in the potential revival of the Australian automotive industry.

Currently, the van’s components are sourced from multiple places. However, the assembly can occur in destination markets provided the necessary manufacturing skills base is present.

In Australia’s case, this is a phoenix prospect.

This means that a new era of automotive technology could rise from the ashes of the former industry and re-establish a fresh generation of evolved electric vehicles in the country.

University’s R&D Contribution

  • Manufacturing Innovation Hub is ideally placed for R&D support to develop advanced manufacturing assembly processes, like collaborative robots.
  • The University will bring its research expertise to a range of potential applications.
  • This includes 3D manufacturing of components and development of futuristic composite materials as well as on-board vehicle systems and advanced Industry 4.0 manufacturing assembly processes.
  • They also have expertise in autonomous vehicles and that could potentially be another aspect of future development.
  • This collaboration is laying the groundwork to get Australia back into the automotive manufacturing value chain.
  • This represents an important workforce development opportunity. Because the cars are flat pack, they cannot be assembled at home.
  • A skilled workforce will be needed, and the aim is for that to be in South Australia.
  • Assembly generates one tranche of jobs.
  • This will provide increasing opportunities for Australian companies to be suppliers by building supply chains, that can support the development of existing and future vehicle models creates further jobs and that is the goal.
  • It is exciting to think that a former home of vehicle manufacturing at Tonsley could once again play a role in the re-emergence of vehicle manufacturing through the expertise of the University in advanced manufacturing and its Research and Development support for “Australianising” the vehicle.

The Electric Van (Australia Smart Pack EV)

  • The van is made of composite materials. Thus, it is lightweight and efficient. It is essentially stuck together with space-age adhesives rather than the traditional nuts, bolts and rivets.
  • And being electric, it is energy efficient, especially if recharged with renewables. Fewer moving parts mean less maintenance too.
  • Flinders’ Tonsley This ‘business on wheels’ concept will be reliable and efficient for getting workers to a job site.
  • Plus, it would also be an excellent solution for transporting materials and tools where they are needed on big scale sites such as mines, especially if Flinders’ research into autonomous technologies were applied.
  • In essence, EV advanced manufacturing holds promise for the regeneration of the automotive industry sector as well as efficiencies for business, supported by Flinders’ research know-how.

PARTNER

Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

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CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.

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Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

SUPPORTING ORGANISATION

SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

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HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

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IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

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