Resources Research and Development Capability

Australia is endowed with an abundant supply of mineral resources, including the world’s largest reserves of lead, nickel, uranium and zinc. The country also has abundant supplies of iron ore and conventional and unconventional sources of oil and gas – despite the extensive exports that have been made from this sector only a small proportion has been extracted.

Australia’s harsh climate, remotely located resources and infrastructure challenges have long tested the nation’s natural resource extractors. Fortunately, these difficulties have led to a unique culture of innovation that has been the hallmark of Australia’s resources industry for more than 100 years, giving rise to research and development (R&D) which is now in demand all over the world.

The Development of Specialist Expertise

Australian universities and other Government-funded research institutions have developed expertise across mineral, coal and oil & gas exploration, geophysics and geoscience, drilling technologies, surface and underground mining, coal and mineral processing, material handling, transport and logistics, pipeline construction materials and methods, engineering and design, and geotechnical engineering and assessment.

As a result, R&D efforts undertaken on behalf of Australia’s minerals sector and its oil and gas sector have underpinned much of the resources industry’s success. The nation’s R&D is intertwined with Australia’s culture of collaboration between government, academia, big business and small enterprises. Of the world’s top 20 global public resources companies, 15 operate in Australia. In many cases, they partner with local research institutions, resulting in world-leading developments which go swiftly to market.

The Right Mix of Skills and Innovation

Australia’s resources industry is a unique mix of traditional skills, cutting-edge R&D and environmental sensibilities. The nation’s mining and oil and gas industries are at the forefront of sustainable extraction, recognising that environmental and commercial successes are inseparable and that embedding this approach from a project’s inception is a precursor to success.

As the world’s resources markets open up and new markets evolve, the need to extract minerals in the most cost effective way becomes more important. The knowledge held by Australian institutes and universities becomes more relevant. The productivity drive means more of the world’s resources organisations are making their way to Australia to learn of the available benefits.

This link provides access to a listing of Australian Research Institutes, Centres and Universities. The linked document provides an introduction to the capability in the Resources R&D sector. It also includes examples of the many Australian research centres and institutions with specialist expertise, including the Commonwealth Government’s premier research institution, the CSIRO.

Your local Austrade representative can provide you with tailored advice and information about connecting and partnering with the Australian Resources R&D sector.