$12.5 million commitment for new nuclear medicine and technology precinct at ANSTO

An estimated 5000 extra jobs are forecast to be created in a new world-class precinct for business, scientists and start-ups at the ANSTO facility at Lucas Heights.

The state government announced on Tuesday, if re-elected, it would invest $12.5 million over four years in the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) project.

Minister for Innovation Matt Kean said "a new Nuclear Medicine and Technology Hub "will help develop cutting edge nuclear medical and technological advances that will make a real difference to people’s lives".

The project was unveiled last year, with funding still to be approved at that time.

The Leader, April 11, 2018.

The Leader, April 11, 2018.

Mr Kean said the funding "will be used to create a new world class precinct for business, scientists and start-ups at ANSTO, which is already working on cutting edge treatments for cancers and other diseases".

“The science and innovation happening at ANSTO is absolutely mind boggling," he said.

“This is a world-leading nuclear research facility that’s using ground breaking technology to develop particle therapy, create new medical treatments for inoperable cancers, and monitor the progression of diseases, among other things.”

The centrepiece of ANSTO’s work is the Open Pool Australian Lightwater (OPAL) reactor, which is one of only six nuclear reactors in that world that can produce commercial quantities of radioisotopes.

Mr Kean said the state government's $12.5 million investment over four years would:

  • Create incubators for nuclear medicine and technology businesses, giving startups access to cutting edge technology and some of the best science in Australia.
  • Help establish a graduate institute, including 25 new scholarships for PhD students.
  • Drive collaboration between startups, researchers and industry to grow advanced technology businesses in NSW.

Holsworthy MP Melanie Gibbons said ANSTO was working towards making Australia a global leader in the supply of nuclear medicine.

Heathcote MP Lee Evans said, "We have some of the best scientific minds already working at ANSTO in Lucas Heights, and this funding will help put southern Sydney on the map as an innovation powerhouse".