Technology in Manufacturing workshop

Join us for the Technology in Manufacturing workshop in Toowoomba on Thursday, 30 May.

ARM Hub is hosting an advanced manufacturing technology workshop and showcase to help Queensland manufacturers grow their businesses.

Learn from specialists in the fields of robotics, artificial intelligence, and additive manufacturing about how these technologies can have significant benefits when implemented in a manufacturing setting. There will be practical demonstrations of each technology.

The event is suited to companies wanting to scale-up, educators, and those interested in advanced manufacturing technology.

TECHNOLOGIES

The event will focus on:

  • robotics
  • cobots (collaborative robots)
  • additive manufacturing (3D printing)
  • artificial intelligence.
Register here.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND

The event would benefit companies that:

  • have automated their business
  • are considering automation or technology
  • are a tech company.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

This is a collaborative event with the Queensland Government Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing, and Water. It forms part of the Queensland Government Advanced Manufacturing 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan.

New partnership with Databricks

We are thrilled to announce a new partnership with world-leading data and AI platform, Databricks.

This strategic, international alliance is set to transform Australia’s manufacturing landscape by enabling smarter decision-making through affordable, safe, relevant and always up-to-date data and AI solutions.

ARM Hub Founder and CEO Professor Cori Stewart believes the benefits to the manufacturing sector will be transformative.

“Our work with Databricks has already enabled ARM Hub to build the lakehouse infrastructure and provide AI-as-a-service to Australian manufacturing businesses. We are proud world-leaders in the services we provide using Databricks. We are ready to support industry to succeed on the global stage in an era of generative AI,” Professor Stewart said.

“The next frontier in scaling deep technology innovation and modernising manufacturing is the smart use of data and AI. We are harnessing opportunities to collaborate with our partners to embed Australian deep tech companies and manufacturing businesses in high-value global supply chains.”

Databricks provides a unified data, analytics, and AI platform that simplifies and enhances the processing of data and the application of AI and machine learning models. With its data intelligence engine, the platform can understand the semantics of enterprise data unique to each organisation, allowing companies to build their AI models on their private enterprise data.

Manufacturers can integrate and streamline data (e.g. IoT sensor data, machine logs, ERP systems and customer information) for a holistic view of the business in real-time, helping with decision-making.

The collaboration aims to scale manufacturing businesses by enhancing business and production capabilities, and inspiring the creation of new products, services, and business models.

“Databricks is committed to accelerating data and AI transformation across all industries, including the manufacturing industry. With solution accelerators that can speed up results, manufacturing companies can leverage purpose-built guides in LLM models, predictive maintenance, supply chain optimisation, and many more. Our partnership with ARM Hub represents a pivotal step toward integrating AI with other advanced technologies and solutions to create smarter, more efficient manufacturing businesses.” said Adam Beavis, Vice President and Country Manager for Databricks in ANZ.

The ARM Hub will leverage the Databricks Data Intelligence Platform as part of its new AI-as-a-service, which facilitates easier adoption of data and AI for the manufacturing sector.

We’re hiring

We are expanding our team in Northgate, Brisbane.

Program Lead

The Program Leader will directly support the Program Director with the delivery of the ARM Hub’s industry engagement programs, including the Australian Manufacturing Capability Network (AMCN). The role will perform a variety of duties including the creation and delivery of the  AMCN, ensuring delivery of projects on-time and on-budget, the organisation of events, and contributing to corporate reporting. This includes the promotion of project activities on social media and other media as needed.

Your responsibilities:

  • Engage with universities and other partners for the delivery of the program.
  • Plan, program and resource the sub-projects to be delivered.
  • Liaise and work with project staff as well as working with vendors and/or consultants responsible for the configuration and deployment of work.
  • Manage projects and activities in line with agreed scope and timeframes and work collaboratively to maximise project outcomes.
  • End-to-end planning and delivery of events as set out in the program plan.
  • Maintain project management and other software systems as required.
  • Coordinate and liaise technical related seminars and demonstrations for industry partners.
  • Assist operations team with facility and project management activities.
  • Research, write and edit reports, notes, and other documentation.
  • Comply with health and safety policies, procedures, hazard reporting and safe work practices.

To ensure job flexibility the successful appointee may be required to:

  • perform any other duties as nominated by the ARM Hub, consistent with the relevant classification and descriptors detailed in the relevant Industry Award. Staff undertaking any new duties will receive training.
  • participate in job rotation or multiskilling in consultation with their supervisor.

Type of appointment

This appointment will be offered on a fixed-term part-time basis (32 hours per week or 0.8 FTE) for 12 months, with the possibility of renewal subject to funding.

Find out more

Senior Mechatronics Engineer

The Mechatronics Engineer will perform a variety of engineering activities including programming, mechanical and electrical design on ARM Hub-nominated projects and oversee project and facility management activities.

Your responsibilities:

  • Support for the ARM Hub Project Services in research and engineering work on a range of projects.
  • Undertake feasibility studies, detailed designs, third party design reviews, in accordance with design requirements and budget objectives.
  • Strategic planning
  • Access and reference applicable scientific literature, Australian and international standards.
  • Support the development of project plans and quotes for delivery of projects.
  • Development of procedures to provide guidance, including quality for ARM Hub project delivery.
  • Project management of projects or parts of projects within ARM Hub operations.
  • Assist the operations team with facility and project management activities.
  • Maintain project management and other operating systems as required.
  • Coordinate and liaise technical-related seminars for ARM Hub.
  • Oversee the work of junior staff working in the technical team. Including supporting their continued professional development.
  • Liaise and work with project staff as well as working with vendors and/or consultants who will primarily be responsible for the configuration and deployment of work.
  • Manage projects and activities in line with agreed scope and timeframes and work collaboratively to maximise project outcomes.
  • Develop software for various systems, including robotics, user interfaces, and simulation.
  • Design and build electrical and mechanical systems in support of research goals.
  • Comply with health and safety policies, procedures, hazard reporting and safe work practices.

Desirable skills

  • Ability to supervise and train HDR and honours students in the field of robotics and autonomous systems.
  • Supervise research undertaken at the ARM Hub, including writing and editing reports, notes, and other documentation.
  • Registration as a Registered Professional Engineer of Queensland (RPEQ) or equivalent.

To ensure job flexibility, the successful appointee may be required to:

  • Perform any other duties as nominated by the ARM Hub, and Staff undertaking any new duties will receive training;
  • Participate in job rotation or multiskilling in consultation with their supervisor;
  • Work across locations.

Type of appointment

This appointment will be offered on a fixed full-time basis for 12 months, with the possibility of renewal subject to funding.

Find out more

ARM Hub welcomes AMCN appointment

The ARM Hub has welcomed news that the Australian Manufacturing Capability Network (AMCN) has been selected as an Industry Partner Organisation for the Industry Growth Program.

Australian Government Minister for Industry and Science Minister Ed Husic today announced that four not-for-profit organisations will work with the Industry Growth Program to help participating small and medium businesses bring new products and services to market.

The Industry Growth Program provides expert advice on commercialisation and early-stage business growth to startups and high-growth small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) operating within the priority areas of the National Reconstruction Fund to help build Australian manufacturing for the future. This advice is provided by Industry Growth Program advisers.

As an Industry Partner Organisation, the AMCN will complement this advice, offering specialised advisory services, drawing on its sectorial expertise.

ARM Hub Founder and CEO Professor Cori Stewart said this was an opportunity to better enable SMEs and startups become global innovation leaders.

“On behalf of the AMCN, we are thrilled to be partnering with the Industry Growth Program. I would like to thank the Australian Government for this opportunity as well as our network partners for their commitment to strengthening sovereign manufacturing capability and growing the national economy,” Professor Stewart said.

“Australian industry has a scale-up challenge resulting in a ‘missing middle’ of ambitious export-orientated SMEs and startups. Small business – which accounts for 93% of all Australian business – have low levels of free cash flow and human resources that limit their capacity to invest in adopting and scaling innovation.

“The AMCN, which will be led by the ARM Hub, will help them by facilitating access to a comprehensive network of technology experts, world-class manufacturing facilities and equipment, and valuable commercialisation services.

“We complement the role of the Industry Growth Program by offering deep technical support across the spectrum of ‘enabling capabilities’ such as robotics, artificial intelligence, and autonomous systems.”

The AMCN is a collaboration between industry, government, and universities.

Its members include the ARM Hub, Core Innovation Hub, CSIRO, Flinders University, Swinburne University of Technology, Queensland Government, University of Technology Sydney, and Western Sydney University.

It is further supported by technology partners, specialist providers, and venture capital investors Advisory Board Centre, Data and Knowledge Enterprise (DKE), Defence Science Centre Western Australia, Defence Innovation Network, Defence Science Institute, Friday Capital Partners, Johnson Winter Slattery, Paradigm Shift Asset Management, Partner Ventures, and Smartsat CRC.

It will act as a support and advisory service to the Industry Growth Program, helping companies in the program to overcome challenges associated with commercialising projects.

Further details about the AMCN will be released shortly.

>> Read the full announcement by Minister for Industry and Science Minister Ed Husic.

Australian-made lithium-ion battery

The ARM Hub is supporting a Queensland start-up to build a smart, safe, and clean lithium battery for Australian homes.

The batteries have a special casing that enables them to be repaired remotely, at a cell level.

The company, Vaulta, is scaling their pilot assembly plant at the ARM Hub.

Challenge: the challenge with lithium batteries

Lithium batteries are widely used, powering everything from smartphones to electric vehicles.

They store more energy in a smaller and lighter package, retain their charge longer when not in use, and operate effectively across a wide range of temperatures.

This combination underscores the technological and environmental potential of lithium batteries in driving forward the transition to cleaner energy and more sustainable consumption patterns.

However, concerns persist about the technology as their production is resource-intensive and they pose a fire risk if damaged or improperly handled.

The recycling and end-of-life disposal of these batteries also presents environmental challenges, as the process is complex and not fully efficient.

Approach: a new approach to lithium-ion battery packs

Vaulta is a Brisbane-based start-up tenanted at the ARM Hub Learning Factory. It is creating a ‘smarter, safer, and cleaner’ lithium battery pack for stationery storage applications, such as homes. The batteries are not used in cars.

CEO Dominic Spooner says while battery cell technology is evolving, the battery case has remained the same.

“I was working in the field and found evidence that battery recycling was a pending issue as we transitioned to more battery use. Between 2 and 5% of lithium-ion batteries are recycled, and as the first wave of electric cars near the end of their lifecycle, that’s bad for the environment and business,” he says.

“I felt it was in part due to the casing and difficulties in repair and disassembly. Being an industrial designer, I was able to iterate a prototype which formed the basis of Vaulta.”

Battery cases contain too many parts, adding unwanted size and weight that affects the battery performance. It also means they are expensive to recycle.

“Dangerous goods freight is very expensive. Currently, when a battery fails the whole 100kg battery pack must be decommissioned and freighted. If the battery can repaired at a cell level you can reduce the components that need recycling.” he says.

“Less battery weight means less in freight costs, which means there is more appetite for recycling and repair.”

Solution

Vaulta does not weld its battery packs, allowing technicians to access the battery at the cell level. The packs also have a communications-enabled battery management system (BMS) that allows the company to remotely repair problems if they arise in the field.

Using advanced composite materials and a smart, streamlined design, Vaulta’s battery casing condenses multiple functions into fewer parts.

The no-weld design means modules can be easily assembled and disassembled, and cells can be reused and recycled, reducing waste and, crucially, giving batteries a second life.

The development process involved meetings with industry to validate the issue, designing and iterating prototypes with hand selected suppliers, and further discussions with industry to validate the proposed solution.

“We met with polymer experts, battery companies that were willing to help, Arc accelerator, and advisors.”

In terms of safety, Dominic says the batteries meet all certification and compliance requirements and the BMS ensure it is safe for the home.

Other key facts:

  • the casing are up to 15% lighter
  • the cases are easier maintain and assemble in the field
  • the cases can be configured to suit different needs.
  • the cases are electrically and thermally conductive, meaning they cool cells at their terminals.
  • “The Vaulta battery is enabling a faster transition to electricification,” says Dominic.

“We are using locally designed and manufactured technology that is funded in part by the Australian and Queensland governments and is backed by ASX listed investors.”

Rehab robot leads to better patient health

ROBERT is a neurorehabilitation robot owned by Queensland start-up, Innovative Rehab Technologies.

A one-of-a-kind in Australia, ROBERT offers both lower and upper limb robotic rehab assistance to aid recovery and achieve better patient outcomes.

The robot is on trial with a major Queensland hospital to determine its value to staff and patients.

Owner of Innovative Rehab Technologies Daniel Carter says the exposure they have received through their Membership with ARM Hub has helped to fast-track their success.

Why we need robots like ROBERT

Australia faces a notable shortage of therapists to undertake patient rehabilitation. This scarcity is more pronounced in regional and remote areas, which is significantly impacting the delivery of healthcare services.

Innovative Rehab Technologies founder Dan Carter says the shortage means patients can’t access the high doses of therapy they need to recover.

“High-dose, intensive therapy is required during neurorehabilitation to help patients recover their movement effectively. As an example, stroke patients may need to undertake 300 repetitions of one movement alone as part of their therapy. Currently, most people are only doing 50 repetitions per day,” Mr Carter said.

Benefits

Made in Denmark by Life Science Robotics, ROBERT is a mobile upper and lower limb rehabilitation robot that allows clinicians to deliver high repetition therapy to help with neurological rehabilitation and reduce deconditioning during hospital stays.

Robots like ROBERT allow a service to deliver hundreds of repetitions of controlled functional movements each day which would otherwise not be possible without extreme staffing pressure.

Because it is mobile, ROBERT can be used throughout a hospital, on wards, in rehabilitation, or with outpatients. It is also simple to set up which allows allied health assistants and nurse to potentially be active in delivering care to patients, freeing up physiotherapists and occupational therapists to treat more patients.

It is the only unit available that provides EMG triggered functional electrical stimulation to assist in movement therapy. This is key to optimising patient treatment as therapy can be started very early when they only have “flickers” of muscle activation. The unit senses these flickers and then stimulates that muscle to activate while the robot assists them on a path of movement programmed by the therapist.

“Robert is not replacing jobs. Rather, the robot is part of a strategy to help workforce sustainability and efficiency,” Mr Carter said.

Hospital trial

Innovative Rehab Technologies was approached by the Queensland hospital to trial the robot with staff for one month with a view to purchasing their own ROBERT.

Over the month, ROBERT will be used by the staff to assess how well it can perform functional movements with patients and also see how easy it will be to integrate into their current service model.

Once completed, it will begin a new trial at a facility on the Sunshine Coast.

Innovative Rehab Technologies and parent company Life Science Robotics have also been approached by a world leader in occupational therapy and rehabilitation research to collaborate on a research project to further develop the upper limb software with them.

How ROBERT the Robot works

ROBERT can be attached to a patient’s upper or lower limb. The therapist can then press a button and program a specific movement, such as bringing a glass up to the patient’s mouth.

They then set how many repetitions the patient must perform and whether they do the movement assisted by the robot, actively with the robot just supporting the weight of the limb, or with resistance.

Multiple different movements and sets / reps can be programmed into a treatment session that the patient can then undertake with supervision while the clinician treats other patients nearby.

About Innovative Rehab Technologies

Innovative Rehab Technologies joined the ARM Hub as a Start-up Member in September 2023.

Founded by Dan and Mel Carter, the couple jointly purchased Robert with Stable Orthopaedics for release in Australia.

“The trials are a big step forward for us as we expected it to take some time before we were able to attract industry attention,” Mr Carter said.

“It is through the ARM Hub that we have been visible to industry, which has cut the time taken for us to enter the market from years to six months.”

Expression of interest: collaboration with the ARM Hub

As ARM Hub embarks on a new phase of innovation and service enhancement, we recognise the importance of partnership and collaboration with agile microenterprises or small-to-medium-sized enterprises in the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI).

We are seeking expressions of interest from forward-thinking AI organisations that specialise in Large Language Models (LLMs) and Generative AI to join us in a partnership.

This initiative is not merely a call for a single project, it’s an invitation to co-create a sustained value proposition within the vibrant ecosystem of the ARM Hub.

Purpose of the partnership

Our objective is to integrate cutting-edge LLMs into our operations, notably through a Retrieval-Augmented Generation (RAG)-based chatbot service. This service will play a crucial role in our Databricks Workspace, enabling advanced data integration and processing capabilities that support the manufacturing sector’s dynamic needs.

We are specifically looking for partners who can appreciate the challenges of security, compliance, and operationalisation in the rapidly evolving landscape of Generative AI and who can contribute to developing a robust service model that is relevant to the needs of SMEs.

Your expertise in ML operations, data engineering, and AI-driven chatbot services would be invaluable as we progress into the second horizon of our project development.

This phase will focus on automated data ingestion, incremental index building, and sophisticated prompt engineering, culminating in a service offering that enhances productivity and innovation for SMEs.

In return, we offer a partnership that extends beyond a transactional engagement, providing a platform for visibility, joint innovation, and shared success in a space that is critical to the future of industry and technology.

Expressions of interest

If your company is ready to make a tangible impact in the field of manufacturing translation and commercialization, we invite you to join us in this endeavour. We believe that together, we can create solutions that not only propel our operations forward but also contribute meaningfully to the national and global landscape.

For those interested in this unique opportunity, we request a preliminary expression of interest and a brief outline of your capabilities and vision for such a partnership.

Please direct your responses to our COO Samuel Jesuadian.

We look forward to exploring the potential of a powerful collaboration that sets new standards in the world of AI and manufacturing.

Invitation for AI Partners | EOI

Invitation for AI Partners: Long-Term Collaborative Opportunity with ARM Hub

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Processing bananas using robotics and AI

We are working with Australia’s banana industry to improve processing.

The second stage of a research project to automate de-handing bananas is underway, with the proof-of-concept to be tested at a mocked-up banana processing facility at the ARM Hub.

The robotic arm will build on the first stage of the project, which found computer vision within the robotic system could identify appropriate cutting locations, assisted by the contrasting green and black abscission line present where the hand connects to the stalk.

The ARM Hub was instrumental in the feasibility stage of the study, which provided information to the industry on what was required for automation.

What is banana de-handing?

Banana de-handing is the process of separating the banana hands from the bunch.

It is a crucial process on any commercial banana farm and those responsible set the pace of the packing shed and the quality of fruit heading to market.

While a skilled task, it is manual, repetitive, and labour intensive, relying heavily on being able to hire and train experienced staff.

Any improvements in efficiency impacts on growers’ processing costs, which is also a win for consumers.

The project is a collaboration with Hort Innovation, QUT, Future Food Systems CRC, and BNL Industrial Solutions.

Read the ABC Rural article

ARM Hub Responsible AI Guidelines

The rapid evolution of AI technologies and their integration into our lives demands a proactive approach to its responsible use.

The ARM Hub adopts the definition of responsible use of AI as a ‘practice of developing and using AI systems in a way that provides benefits to individuals, groups and wider society, while minimising the risk of negative consequences.’

This policy has been prepared by Dr Cori Stewart, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the ARM Hub. AI generated content is used within this document.

Download AI Guidelines

Tailored R&D solutions for your company

We have launched a new research initiative that will lead to real solutions for industry challenges.

The ARM Hub Industry-led Research Fellowship program is designed to close the gap between industry and academia.

It involves engaging a researcher (called a Fellow) to work solely on developing tailored solutions to your company’s challenge.

We want to hear from you!

Fellows work on projects put forward by companies.

For this initiative, we are looking for companies with a problem or challenge that may be overcome using robotics, artificial intelligence (ai), data analytics, or design.

Please outline your project here.

Time and costs

Fellowships are a cost-effective way of generating innovative solutions and accessing world-class research, with companies required to provide just half of the costs.

Fellows work on a project for anywhere between six months to four years, depending on the needs of the company and the complexity of the challenge.

Don’t miss out!

Companies have until 21 January 2024 to submit their project proposal.

This is a brilliant opportunity to have a solution to your business challenge addressed by leading specialists in robotics, ai, data analytics, and design.

For more information, please contact Samuel.jesuadian@armhub.com.au.