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Innovative bush fire tech put to the test

High-tech sensors which can predict and detect fires and clean energy solutions for bush fire-affected communities are among five innovative ideas being piloted under a landmark NSW Government research and development (R&D) program.



Minister for Science, Innovation and Technology Alister Henskens said the Bushfire Technology Pilots Program, a total of $6 million over four years, will support trials of field-ready bush fire technology developed by NSW businesses.

“NSW is a world leader in bush fire technology and this NSW Government investment is unlocking opportunities for homegrown innovators to test their potentially life saving research,” Mr Henskens said.

“We’re investing in these innovative technologies so that NSW can remain at the cutting edge of bush fire technology, and save lives by enhancing bush fire preparedness and response.”

Minister for Emergency Services and Resilience and Minister for Flood Recovery Steph Cooke said the grants on offer through the Bush Fire Technology Pilots Program cover multiple components of a bush fire response, including providing power to remote sites, real-time monitoring of fire conditions and data-sharing.

“The investment being announced today will put innovative technologies to the test so that one day they can be used by our emergency services in NSW, as well as organisations across Australia and the world, to save lives and improve the way we respond to disasters,” Ms Cooke said.

NSW Chief Scientist and Engineer Professor Hugh Durrant-Whyte said the wide range of work funded through the grants reflects NSW’s position as a global leader in bush fire technology.

“These projects will be collaborative, with grant recipients working closely with lead NSW fire response organisations, including the Rural Fire Service, Fire & Rescue, NSW Telco Authority, National Parks and Wildlife Service and the Department of Planning and Environment,” Professor Durrant-Whyte said.

The program is the first initiative to be rolled out under the Bushfire Response R&D Mission, a recommendation of the NSW R&D Action Plan.