The centre was opened by Western Australian Premier, Colin Barnett, and is a partnership between the networking giant turned software and security company, Curtin University and one of the country’s largest energy companies, Woodside.
The two foundation partners used the launch to demonstrate joint embryonic IoE research projects and proofs of concept currently underway.
The WA Premier said the centre was an influential step towards a collaborative approach to innovation between industry and academia, and would cement Perth’s position as a global technology leader. “The Cisco Internet of Everything Innovation Centre will assist Western Australia to become a global collaborator in research and innovation, offering us a competitive advantage for investment, new businesses and creating jobs,” said Barnett.
Woodside’s contribution is focused on research and development of what it calls the Plant of the Future. CEO Peter Coleman, said the Plant of the Future will link Woodside’s knowledge base with artificial intelligence, data analytics, advanced sensors and control systems.
“We are taking a collaborative approach to enhancing our operations as part of our digital transformation journey. This partnership will create a globally competitive centre for excellence that could be leveraged in our LNG operations, as we progress our remote operations capabilities,” Coleman added.
The centre will include a laboratory, technological collaboration area and dedicated space to show IoE in action. Cisco said it will bring together start-up companies, industry experts, developers, researchers and academics in an open collaboration environment to create a “connected community” focused on cloud, analytics, cyber security and IoT network platforms.
Irving Tan, SVP for Asia-Pacific and Japan, Cisco, said the intent is to focus on accelerating innovation in Australia’s resources, agriculture and astronomy sectors, and more broadly around big data. “Already through our initial Western Australian IoE Centre partners we are seeing exciting innovations including work around the energy ‘Plant of the Future’ with Woodside, and ongoing progress led by Curtin University around the Square Kilometre Array which will be the largest, most capable radio telescope ever constructed,” he said.
“The new IoE Centre will be completed later this year. Cisco experts, industry partners and ecosystem start-ups will work together to develop next-generation technology solutions, complete proof of concepts, and do rapid prototyping.” Curtin University Vice-Chancellor Deborah Terry, said Curtin looked forward to hosting the centre on its Bentley Campus and working with partners to develop economic and social benefit from its capability in astronomy, geosciences and Big Data, along with the many benefits the Internet of Everything Innovation Centre would bring. CSIRO executive director for national facilities and collections, David Williams, also signalled the organisation’s intent to join Cisco and the centre foundation partners, with details to be completed over the next month.
The CSIRO has responsibility for the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder, Pawsey Supercomputing Centre and delivery of national IT infrastructure and services for research. The Cisco IoE Innovation Centre, Australia, will include a hub in Perth and Sydney opening later this year. It is one of eight globally including in Rio de Janeiro, Toronto, Songdo, Berlin, Barcelona, Tokyo and London.