Clunies Ross award goes to defence scientist


Smart new technology which counters the global threat posed by improvised explosive devices (IEDs) has received a prestigious Clunies Ross Award.

Australia’s Minister for Defence, the Honourable Marise Payne, handed out the award to scientist Darryn Smart, who has developed the new force protection systems.

Smart was awarded the Clunies Ross Knowledge Commercialisation Award, which is presented annually by the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering.

For the Redwing programme, Smart developed two robust, lightweight systems – a handheld version called Greengum for use by dismounted troops and a more powerful system called Greygum for fitting to light vehicles.

The Redwing systems were developed by Smart at DST Group, sponsored by Defence’s Joint Counter Improvised Threat Task Force and manufactured by Australian industry under project coordination by the Australian Military Sales Office.

For the Huckleberry programme Smart also developed a new device and software to provide urgent protection for Australian Defence Force troops against an emerging threat for which there was no existing countermeasure.

Minister Payne thanked Smart along with his team, including Ben Barona, the principal manufacturing engineer, Katherine Thatcher and Rex Russell from the Australian Military Sales Office, and Tim Heenan from the Joint Counter Improvised Threat Task Force.

“This is a well-deserved recognition for innovations that have delivered significant operational capability for the benefit of ADF, Coalition and partner forces,” Minister Payne said. “The rapid development of unique devices under Defence’s force protection programme has been both timely and life-saving for security forces threatened by IEDs.

“The Redwing systems have been commercialised with an estimated benefit to Australian industry of $64 million, and to date Australia has supplied 150,000 units of the Redwing equipment to the Afghanistan National Security Forces.”


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