Japanese Prime Minister, H.E. Mr Shinzo Abe, and Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, met in Tokyo in December for the annual Japan-Australia summit. In discussing the “Next steps of the Special Strategic Partnership: Asia, Pacific and Beyond” the Prime Ministers welcomed ongoing cooperation in innovative projects such as utilising the Quasi-Zenith Satellite System (QZSS) for positioning applications.
The critical importance of science, technology and innovation for both Japan and Australia was formally recognised with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Japan’s Forum for Innovative Regenerative Medicine and Austrade, and the commitment by Japan’s key research-intensive universities and Australia’s Group of eight universities to boost research links.
Australia’s Cooperative Research Centre for Spatial Information (CRCSI) stated, “this collaborative work is important to the development of Australia’s national positioning expertise and extends existing opportunities to deliver real-time 2cm accuracy anywhere, anytime capabilities to communities without current access to Australia’s mobile coverage.”
The CRCSI Positioning Program has recently developed a robotic tractor undertaking rice production activities in the Jerilderie district of NSW using the QZSS satellite with a 5cm accuracy (see below video about the project). The project involved collaborative research with the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency.
The new strengthened Japan-Australia agreement should result in the development of home-grown positioning innovation such as this in years to come.
Read the full Joint Statement of Prime Minister Abe and Prime Minister Turnbull for further details.