Cisco plans Perth internet centre

18/03/2015 - 15:37

Global technology company Cisco has announced plans to invest $US15 million over five years in an ‘internet of everything’ innovation centre in Australia, with locations at Curtin University in Bentley and in Sydney.

Curtin Institute of Radio Astronomy boss Steven Tingay.

Global technology company Cisco has announced plans to invest $US15 million over five years in an internet of everything (IoE) innovation centre in Australia, with locations at Curtin University in Bentley and in Sydney.

The initial partners in the centre will include Curtin University and Sirca, a not-for-profit company owned by 40 universities across Australia and New Zealand, which provides global data to support research.

Woodside Petroleum is also expected to collaborate with the Cisco centre, through its established relationship with Curtin.

Cisco’s Australian centre will be one of eight globally after Rio de Janeiro, Toronto, Songdo, Berlin, Barcelona, Tokyo and London.

The centre is designed to bring together Cisco experts, industry partners and startups to develop proof of concepts, features and functionalities, and undertake rapid prototyping.

The centre will include dedicated space to demonstrate IoE in action and open areas where customers, startups, researchers and entrepreneurs are invited to work and brainstorm on new ideas and technologies.

In that respect, it will offer similar services to the state government’s Technology Park precinct, located next to the Curtin campus.

Cisco has been involved in the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project, which has research hubs at Curtin and UWA, for more than five years.

“The aim now with Cisco IoE Innovation Centre and its ecosystem of partners is to accelerate innovation and the adoption of the IoE in Australia,” said Irving Tan, senior vice-president Asia Pacific and Japan at Cisco.

Cisco defines IoE as the intelligent connection of people, processes, data and things to the internet.

It has calculated that IoE-based solutions can deliver $US19 trillion of economic value worldwide over the next decade.

According to a Cisco study, Australia is one of the countries with the greatest potential to benefit from IoE, thanks to its proximity to Asia, its well-trained engineers and its innovation power.

Graeme Wright, deputy vice-chancellor research and development said Curtin had been a major player in the development of Australia’s capability underpinning the SKA.

‘‘It (Curtin) has built a broad base of computational and data scientists, so we are well advanced to host the CIIC lab at Curtin,” he said.

“Perth is also emerging as a leading technology hub in Australia for the oil and gas industry and pushing the technology boundaries of computation and big data analytics as a result of investments in radio astronomy and supercomputing.

“We look forward to working with our partners to help unlock the economic and social benefits of the CIIC.”

Steven Tingay, who heads the Curtin Institute of Radio Astronomy, said technology developed for the SKA would not only help solve the great mysteries of science, but would also benefit business.

“The SKA and its precursor projects are really motivating a lot of different people to come together and think about how we can use those opportunities more broadly,” he said.

“We see the IoE Innovation Centre as a good platform to extend our partnership with Cisco and to collaborate with other companies who are producing big data sets and struggling with the same sorts of things that we're struggling with as scientists."

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

Subscription Options