A transformative Diploma developed in collaboration between Flinders University and BAE Systems Australia brings Industry 4.0 and advanced manufacturing to the Hunter class frigates in South Australia’s new digital shipyard. This course is an example of how Flinders collaborates with industry to develop required training, to upskill their employees, the supply chain of SMEs and STEM teachers to grow the pipeline of capability in defence.
Technologies such as collaborative robots and autonomous guided vehicles would bring about benefits to workers in reducing heavy lifting and improving safety and performance. The course has been designed to provide graduates with an understanding of theory and practice of industry 4.0 approaches and digital design.
It contributes to building sovereign manufacturing capability that would benefit naval shipbuilding, defence, other manufacturing sectors, SMEs and the supply chain.
Expression of Interest
Diploma of Digital Technologies
Flinders University is delighted to have won, in partnership with BAE Systems Maritime Australia (formerly ASC Shipbuilding), the prestigious Training and Mentorship Program of the Year in 2020 for the Diploma of Digital Technologies in Defence Connect's Australian Defence Industry Awards.
The newly created Diploma of Digital Technology will educate shipbuilders-come-students on digital technologies required as part of the $35 billion Hunter Class Frigate Program, and will help retain important shipbuilding capability between shipbuilding programs.
Your diploma will give you a broad base of skills and will prepare you to engage with the industries of the future. It is the first step towards a range of career opportunities.
Potential employers include:
Photo of Diploma student Operations Performance Analyst Lead Emma from BAE Systems Australia (photo credit BAE Systems Australia)
The program started in 2020 with industry partner BAE Systems, 300 workers have undertaken the Flinders University Diploma of Digital Technologies – including 51 shipbuilders upskilling for the $90 billion Hunter Class Frigate Program and personnel from around 150 organisations around Australia.
BAE Systems Australia Chief People Officer Danielle Mesa says: “This has been a great program that started with upskilling shipbuilders for the future – but it’s now so much more than that.”
“Now it’s not just ensuring our people are ready to embrace the new technologies needed for the Hunter Class Frigate Program but the broader defence manufacturing industry which is undergoing rapid change,” she says.
Diploma student from BAE Systems Australia, Operations Performance Analyst Lead, Emma says:
Upskilling our employees will prepare our workforce for new developments within an ever-changing digital world. Through the Diploma of Digital Technologies, I’ve developed new skills in Design for Manufacture, enabling me to design and create my own 3D objects. I’m also now equipped with programming capabilities, thanks to Cyber-physical Systems, Robotics & Automation, increasing my understanding of the potential for digitisation and innovation to benefit the broader defence industry.
Professor Giselle Rampersad, right, with Tamara (BAE Systems Australia), left to right, Laurie Tonks (and her daughter Sophie) and Annette Fleming (Nova Systems).
Professor Giselle Rampersad - Director of the Centre for Defence Engineering Research and Training at Flinders University - says the program has met another significant milestone this year with 70 interstate female participants from every State and Territory in Australia, with several participants in Queensland from Boeing Defence involved in aerospace manufacturing, Lockheed Martin in NSW and SA, small and medium sized enterprises, Nova Systems and BAE sites around the country.
Mrs Laurie Tonks, a cybersecurity compliance analyst with Australian-owned global company Nova Systems, says the course will widen her career horizons and support her current role.
“I am extremely keen to build on my knowledge of how cybersecurity fits in with the future of automation, robotics and Industry 4.0, particularly in light of the expanding defence sector in South Australia,” the 34-year-old young mum says. “This part-time subsidised course also gives me the flexibility to manage work and home life,” she says.
Photo of participants from BAE Systems Australia
Innovation is needed to successfully introduce Industry 4.0 in the workplace. This topic introduces participants to innovative thinking, the process of innovation and the interplay with industry 4.0. The topic focuses on understanding human and institutional factors in the introduction of new technologies such as industry 4.0, innovation, change management, trust in technology, industry 4.0 for supply chain competitiveness and the process of innovation in an organisation.
Defence focuses on 4 segments: land, sea, air and cyber. Cyber is quickly becoming paramount in not only defence but in all aspects of life as we become more connected through technology. The topic introduces participants to key areas of network design and communication, Information structures and governance, cybersecurity awareness, vulnerabilities, threats, risk assessment, and legal and ethical issues.
Engineering Design has been identified within the shipbuilding industry as a skill in demand. It incorporates design thinking as well as the concept of the digital twin. A digital twin is a connected representation of a physical asset, such as a factory, submarine/frigate or component of it. There is connectivity between the digital and physical assets, that facilitates condition monitoring and preventative maintenance.
This topic equips participants with the knowledge and skills to understand cyber-physical systems, robotics and automation. Technologies involved includes cobots, automated ground vehicles (AGVs), industrial automation in an assembly line including automatic warehouse, inspection, classification and delivery.
Design for manufacture and sustainment is of crucial importance in shipbuilding and defence. The topic explores CNC machines and CAM, through to rapid prototyping, additive manufacturing and 3D printing. It evaluates form, function and materials. The topic explores approaches such as sustainable design, ergonomics/human factors, optimising cost, quality, reliability, safety, delivery time, and customer satisfaction. It incorporates Manufacturing design technologies - Finite Element Analysis (FEA), simulation and modelling.
Practical skills and knowledge will help put you at the forefront of the changes brought by Industry 4.0. Flinders works closely with major partners to ensure you gain the hands-on skills required by employers. During your studies you’ll have the opportunity to develop real-world skills with organisations such as:
As new technology is always developing, the new knowledge and skills learnt from this course will be a good asset and strong contribution to the capability of sovereign industry. One key area that stands out from studies, is learning from lecturers with academic skills and industry experience. Together these two elements give greater depth and insight to the learning experience.
Who would have ever thought at 53 years of age I would be going to Flinders University to study. I have to be honest and say the experience has actually been very interesting. The subjects I’m learning really get me thinking in depth about the uses and application of Innovation and industry 4.0 technology in the market place today. Thinking of opportunities where perhaps this technology could be implemented into the ship yard or onboard the Frigates is one of the interesting and rewarding challenges I’ve been given. The knowledge and support provided from the lectures has been excellent, it’s not quite what I remember back at school and If I am capable of achieving this, you definitely can.
Loving the whole studying side of things—it is opening up my mind to what is going on in technology, and where the future is heading. I recommend it to anyone who wants to better them self in the future, and say to always push yourself because you will shock yourself on what you really can do. Flinders has also been very helpful.
What excites me the most is learning and understanding Innovation 4.0, the new digital world and how the applications will be implemented on the Hunter Class project, this drives my motivation, it has been extremely interesting and an eye-opener regarding Cybersecurity, learning all about security dimensions, vulnerability, threats, encryption, IoT, social ethics and security.
“If you are lucky enough to be offered to study at Flinders I would definitely take the opportunity. The lecturers are patient, and some can really relate to our fields of expertise within a production base environment. The work is set out really well to make it achievable. The services provided are well appointed and the Flinders support network are available if you need support.”
It is only the start but already I think it gives me a better understanding of a potential better way I can do things with increased, lateral thinking and confidence in looking for future opportunities.
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