Reducing food waste, community outreach via coding, a unique Bee radar and Australia’s next big superfood trend are just some of the new ideas that Australia’s researchers have submitted as part of their successful applications into the latest round of the CSIRO ON Prime program.

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More than 290 researchers in 99 teams from across Australia registered for ON Prime 3 this July. Of these, 68 ON Prime teams will be armed with the skills to not only validate their science and technology ideas in the lab, but also in the marketplace.

Some of the big ideas that will be developed and fast-tracked in this year’s ON Prime 3 include:

  • A new antimicrobial for Golden Staph bacterium,
  • Artificial Intelligence for livestock farming efficiencies,
  • Modern teen mental health and resilience program designed for the school curriculum,
  • Bee-dar: A bee tracking conservation device,
  • Harder and tougher kevlar protection through innovations in nano-tech,
  • Mould reduction technology for food safety and waste reduction,
  • Diabetes management tool

Quite simply, the calibre of ideas and appetite for entry into this year’s ON Prime has been overwhelming.

What, exactly, is ON Prime?

ON Prime provides an opportunity for Australian researchers to develop innovative products and services with genuine commercial or social good potential.

As a part-time (eight weeks in total) pre-accelerator, ON Prime embraces a get-out-of-the-building approach to learning, by encouraging hands-on, practical learning and business model development with access to highly experienced mentors.

ON teams with the most innovative outcomes developed through ON Prime may be eligible to advance into the full-time ON Accelerate program in 2018. Here they can further develop their proof of concepts and prototypes into real world outcomes or even commercial entities.

There are dozens of incubators in Australia - most of them digital - but ON is unique.

ON graduate, Dr Justine Lacey of CSIRO, believes her team’s participation in ON took them a long way in a short amount of time.

“We’ve worked together for eight weeks and in that time our product has changed,” Dr Lacey said.

“We’ve had business interest coming in already,” she said. “We couldn’t have anticipated that coming in to the ON Prime program.”

Similarly, James Palmer, co-founder of Silentium Defence, a world-leading passive radar invention and graduate of ON, said that while his team had great expertise in their respective fields, they lacked the actual business know-how to make their innovation a success.

“We are engineers, that’s our training, and we didn’t have the business expertise and skills", Mr Palmer said.

“The CSIRO ON program actually gave us the tools to better understand our customers as well as putting all of the meat around that to make a business”, he said.

“The level of expertise [the ON team] can impart in a very short period of time is phenomenal,” he said.

To keep up to date with all the teams’ progress, pivots and growing potential follow us on Twitter ONaccelerator

Finally - if you have a big idea that's ready to breakthrough or you know someone who does, applications for our next program - ON Accelerate 4 – are now open. Register your interest here and spread the word.

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