PARIS – An international research laboratory to push naval and maritime innovation in Australia is to be founded in Adelaide by France’s Naval Group and the key French national science research organization CNRS together with 14 Australian companies, universities, R&D institutes and various government bodies.

The scientific strategy plan for the laboratory, to be known as the OzCean Technocampus, will be established by the 16 partners before the end of 2019 together with its terms of reference and rules of governance.

Announcement of the plan comes after Naval Group and Australia on Feb. 11 signed a $35 billion contract to build 12 Attack-class submarines for the Australian navy. The deal is expected to tie the two countries’ defense industries together for decades.

Experts at the OzCean Technocampus will conduct non-destructive testing, computing, simulations, and materials studies, including corrosion and antifouling, according to a Naval Group statement. They will also provide vocational and higher education training programs to support the development of the Australian naval industry.

Naval Group specifically aims to advance research in autopilots and dynamic positioning, ship stabilization, unmanned systems technologies, oil and gas, energy and health monitoring, the company said.

“Through the OzCean Technocampus, Naval Group plans to develop our research and development footprint in Australia in cooperation with French and Australian academics, research centers, and small and medium enterprises,” said François Duthoit, vice president for international research and development cooperation at Naval Group. He added that “this move represents a concrete step in achieving a powerful ambition for Naval Group: Making innovation a driving force for its development, in France and internationally.”

The 14 Australian organizations involved in OzCean Technocamps are Defence SA, the Government of New South Wales, the Government of Victoria, Defence Innovation Network (NSW), the University of South Australia, the University of Adelaide, Flinders University, the University of Tasmania, the University of Technology Sydney, Deakin University, the University of Sydney, the University of New South Wales, the University of Melbourne, and ASC.

Christina Mackenzie was the France correspondent for Defense News.

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