Why Technology Is Key to Post-Pandemic Australian Manufacturing

Man wearing face mask and uniform carrying a box inside a warehouse

In a recent article in The Conversation, Australia’s Chief Scientist, Cathy Foley, outlined why she believes science and technology will drive a post-pandemic Australian manufacturing boom.

She’s the latest to point to the potential, and necessity, of technology-focused advanced manufacturing to future-proof local industry.

Sector leaders including the CSIRO and ANSTO have similarly emphasised the importance of innovation to sustain Australian manufacturing, while the NSW Government agrees research and technology are vital to the ongoing profitability of manufacturing in NSW.

At Romar, we’ve long embraced innovation and state-of-the-art technology to provide our manufacturing solutions, including additive manufacturing, medical device manufacturing, micromolding, silicone and elastomers.

Here’s why we believe technology – in tandem with world-class expertise and collaboration – will be crucial for Australian manufacturing post COVID-19.

Doctor holding a paper with word of Corona virus


The pandemic has illustrated the importance of local manufacturing solutions that are globally-orientated… and internationally competitive.

COVID-19 has caused major disruptions to supply chains and shipping and impacted access to raw materials around the globe. It’s clear that we need Australian manufacturers with the expertise to deliver cutting-edge and comprehensive manufacturing solutions from analysis to materials selection, design for manufacture, commercial manufacture and logistics.

Romar’s capability to extend supply lines, tool up quickly and create existing components to exceptional quality has positioned us to help not just for our clients, but other companies facing capacity restraints during the pandemic.

Dr Foley believes it is in Australia’s best interests for our manufacturers to develop capability in pharmaceutical and medical manufacturing – and she supports the government’s focus on areas including low-emissions technologies, resources technology, food security, defence and aerospace.

Engineers discussing using the 3D drawing


Prior to the pandemic, advanced manufacturing was already a burgeoning area in Australia, with leading research and development institutions including the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre (AMGC), the Australian Manufacturing Technology Institute Limited (AMTIL) and ANSTO supporting and partnering with manufacturers.

Romar is already working with these organisations on research projects to strengthen our niche advanced manufacturing capacity for sectors including medical, mining, defence and aerospace.

The future of smart manufacturing may lie in these areas, as attested by the growth of the aerospace industry in recent years. Australia’s advanced manufacturing for aerospace has attracted international attention, with leading organisations including Boeing, BAE Systems, General Motors, Toyota, DuPont and Siemens establishing local hubs.

Foreman control loading Containers box to truck


Whilst supporting the growth of our advanced manufacturing sectors, the Australian’s Government Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) is also looking at opportunities for Australian manufacturing in the United States.

Its website quotes the United States Census Bureau’s 2016 publication, U.S. Trade with Australia in Advanced Technology Products, which reported that of ten categories classed as advanced technology products that Australia exported to the United States in 2015, the highest was in life sciences (US$38 million) followed by aerospace (US$31 million), while advanced materials came in at less than US$1 million.

Austrade concludes that there is ample room for Australian advanced manufacturers to build a larger share of the US market, particularly in the aerospace, marine and automotive industries – using streamlined manufacturing technology and innovative materials.

Two men checking the design inside a factory


Late last year, Romar signed a Letter of Intent with the NSW Government to play a role in the Advanced Manufacturing Research Facility (AMRF) currently in development with the new Western Sydney Aerotropolis.

The AMRF will be a hub for exceptional aerospace, defence and medical manufacturing using cutting-edge technology and processes.

Simultaneously, we are developing partnerships with industry leading organisations like ANSTO and with like-minded Australian manufacturers, including Gilmour Space Technologies.

While we’re committed to continual research and innovation, to bolster our capability in line with global industry needs, we also know that central to world-class manufacturing is technology – such as our unique Lasertec 65 hybrid 3D printer – and a world-class team of manufacturing and materials engineers.

To survive and thrive beyond the pandemic, Australian manufacturing needs to embrace research and innovation, invest in expertise and technology and prioritise collaboration… just as Romar has done in recent years.

Please contact us to find out more about our comprehensive, cutting edge and competitive manufacturing solutions.

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