Featured News Industry partnership puts Cairns a step ahead

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Mon, 18 Dec 2017

Industry partnership puts Cairns a step ahead

James Cook University and Enex TestLab today signed a partnership agreement to build Australia’s first testing and certification centre for the burgeoning markets in Internet of Things (IoT) devices, monitors and sensors.

The connection of data, devices, people, processes and things to the internet is creating unparalleled opportunities for Australia and the world. IoT will allow individuals, businesses and governments to collect information to make better and more informed policy decisions, driving economic efficiencies and productivity.

The JCU/Enex agreement, supported by Huawei, will see the development of a new Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) testing and certification centre established on the JCU Cairns campus.

Enex TestLab CEO, Mr Matt Tett said the NB-IoT certification centre was an exciting addition to the growing IoT environment.

“IoT solutions, networks and products are being deployed rapidly, ahead of the certification and security processes,” Mr Tett said.

“The centre is critical to ensuring testing policies and assurances are developed to build safe and secure NB-IoT environments.”
NB-IoT is a narrowband radio technology designed for the Internet of Things (IoT), which enables new applications and business models. NB-IoT focuses specifically on broad coverage, low cost and long battery life.

This technology is now the only global IoT standard endorsed by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), and enables a wide range of devices and services to be connected using cellular telecommunications bands and infrastructure.

Working with independent certification experts Enex TestLab will enable JCU to certify devices under an independent assessment program endorsed by the National Association of Testing Authorities (NATA).

Companies manufacturing NB-IoT network devices will be able to engage the JCU centre to have their products independently tested and certified, allowing users to be confident they meet the current industry standard.

“This partnership places Australia at the leading edge of NB-IoT development and implementation, and enhances JCU’s IoT leadership both nationally and globally,” JCU’s Head of IoT Engineering Professor Wei Xiang said.

JCU Vice Chancellor Professor Sandra Harding said the certification centre was an exciting opportunity for JCU and for Cairns.

“JCU researchers are already using IoT networks in the field with great success, so we’re very conscious of the potential for industries in our region, and across the tropics worldwide, to use this technology to enhance their productivity and sustainability.

“We have embraced the Internet of Things because we’re preparing our graduates for the jobs of the future. JCU was the first University in Australia to offer a specialised IoT degree accredited by Engineers Australia, and we’re continuing to lead in this field.”

Huawei Chief Security Officer, Dr Malcolm Shore said Huawei was a world leader in the development of NB-IoT technology and was committed to advancing the technology in Australia.

“Organisations and individuals procuring devices for a NB-IoT network can be assured the products tested in the JCU centre are certified to the global standard by skilled and independent assessors,” Dr Shore said.


Ms Linden Woodward
Senior Media and Communications Officer
James Cook University

T: 07 4232 1007 [61 7 4232 1007]
E: linden.woodward@jcu.edu.au