South Australia the information warfare hub for the ADF

In an age of big data, artificial intelligence, increasing surveillance requirements, cyber security, electronic warfare supporting emerging technologies and capabilities, South Australia is leading the way in strengthening the country’s information warfare capabilities and ensuring a smarter, more integrated Australian Defence Force (ADF).  

South Australia’s Edinburgh Defence Precinct is at the heart of this activity, as the national defence research, manufacturing and sustainment hub, housing RAAF Base Edinburgh, the Defence Science and Technology Group’s (DSTG) largest Australian operations and a thriving cluster of defence companies and expertise.

Over the past decade, the precinct has become a major intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance hub for the ADF, with the Air Warfare Centre, 92 Wing, 1 Remote Sensor Unit, Joint Electronic Warfare Unit and 462 Squadron located in the Edinburgh precinct.

Today, the precinct remains a hive of activity. It continues to evolve to meet the needs of some of the nation’s most critical Defence projects, including the P-8A Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft, Triton un-crewed aerial system, the Peregrine EW aircraft, Jindalee Operational Radar Network (JORN) and increasingly space.

The base supports the operations, deployment, logistical support and training for current and emerging platforms and hosts the developing data processing, storage and distribution systems and secure networks required to rapidly distribute the analysed information to the warfighters and decision makers. Providing direct access to the DSTG researchers, world-class test and training ranges and a network of defence industry across all domains, Edinburgh offers the ideal environment to support current and future Information Warfare projects and capabilities.

Work will soon commence on a new purpose-built Defence 737 deep maintenance and modification facility, which will provide the critical infrastructure necessary for the local maintenance and upgrade of the P-8A Poseidon, and the E-7A Wedgetail airborne early warning and control aircraft.

Defence SA Chief Executive Richard Price said the increase in activity at Edinburgh Defence Precinct is a clear indication of the critical role South Australia plays in enhancing the nation’s air warfare, surveillance and intelligence capabilities.

“There has been a lot of focus on South Australia being the nation’s epicentre for naval shipbuilding, but information warfare is also a key pillar of our defence strategy, with growth in this sector propelling South Australia forward as the nation’s information warfare hub,” he said.

“Integrating the most advanced weapons systems across air, sea, land, space and cyber domains into a truly integrated joint warfighting force requires an agile, secure and platform agnostic information warfare ecosystem.

“These systems require a highly skilled and specialised workforce capable of collecting, managing and exploiting large amounts of data at high security levels from multiple sources in a cyber-secure environment.

“This capability and expertise is found right here in South Australia.”

South Australia is fast establishing as the ADF’s operational hub for information warfare and the State Government is committed to supporting the development of the nation’s surveillance capabilities by building a critical mass of knowledge, workers and industry.

Next month, Defence SA will host the SA Aerospace and Information Warfare Forum i