In mid-December last year Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced that the newly formed Australian Space Agency will be headquartered in Adelaide in the former Royal Adelaide Hospital site which is currently being transformed into an innovation hub. Adelaide beat out several strong bids, including ones from WA, NSW and Canberra, to become the new centre of space exploration and technology in Australia. The decision raised the ire of some, with claims that the decision was influenced more by political factors and the upcoming election than by the strength of the various bids presented. The government has insisted however that the Adelaide bid was the strongest and will bring the most benefit to the country as a whole.
The establishment of an Australian Space Agency now has lots of advantages and is broadly considered to be a positive step. The agency will be able to regulate the frequent incoming requests from other nations, as we can see parts of the sky that they can’t. Having access to a Space agency within our own country will help to prevent our best and brightest from leaving to pursue opportunities overseas. But most of all, it provides an opportunity to fire up the imagination of the public and gain support for more and better space-based projects in the future.