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Technology in Australia 1788-1988Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering
Table of Contents

Chapter 13

I Colonial Origins

II First World War

III Between The World Wars

IV The Second World War

V Post-second World War
i The United Kingdom Australia Agreement
ii The ADSS
iii Decline of Imported Work
iv Background Research and Development of the Department of Supply
v Technology in the Armed Services

VI After The Joint Project

VII Science And Decisions At The Top

VIII Armed Services Technology

IX New Tasks And Projects

X Transfer Of Research And Development

XI Acknowledgement



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Decline of Imported Work

The sudden closure of Blue Streak, the failure of ELDO, and the declining number of British weapons trials led to new attitudes in Australia to the Joint Project. A consequence of all these changes was the eventual closure of the range, greater involvement of the services, the transfer of WRE's interests to indigenous products and studies, and participation in a broader international defence science community. Although during the twenty years since the inception of the Joint Project, scientists at Salisbury had been concerned primarily with furthering British guided weapon development, activities of some relevance to Australian defence interests had been undertaken.

A major Australian technology achievement in this area was the application of computer analysis to trials results and performance prediction. Some ten different types of guided weapon were subjected to repeated development trials and from these, five underwent acceptance trials for service.

It was necessary to explore weapon system behaviour over a wide range of operating conditions. This was potentially a vastly expensive process, but the WRE devised a technique of mathematically modelling the behaviour of a whole weapon system.[41] They validated the models by selected trials observations and, thus provided an accurate and credible forecast of weapon behaviour under all conditions, without incurring the expense of an exhaustive set of trials.

The modelling procedure proved so effective that it was seen to be possible to investigate the performance characteristics of aircraft and even such complex situations as aircraft engagements, air strikes against ground targets, and various other battlefield and naval engagement situations. In due course the Australian Services benefited greatly from this versatile technique.

Organisations in Australian Science at Work - Australian Defence Scientific Service (A.D.S.S.); European Launcher Development Organisation (E.L.D.O.); Weapons Research Establishment (W.R.E.)

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© 1988 Print Edition page 943, Online Edition 2000
Published by Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre, using the Web Academic Resource Publisher