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Capability and Technology Demonstrator Program

Further Information

About the CTD Program

The CTD program was established in 1997 as a result of the Defence Efficiency Review.  The aim of the program was addressed in the Government’s 1998 Defence and Industry Strategic Policy Statement, which stated,

“The Defence Reform Program saw the launch of a CTD program.  The CTD program aims to show ADF users how leading edge technology can be integrated quickly into existing, new, enhanced or replacement high-priority capabilities.”

The CTD program is organisationally located within the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO).  DSTO provides a management office for the CTD Program and contract management for most of the CTD projects.

The CTD program is not a grants program; rather it is a collaborative activity conducted under contract between Defence and industry, or research organisations, to deliver a demonstration of the capability potential of new technology. It is the Defence Department's flagship technology innovation program. The program’s emphasis is on technology in Australian / New Zealand industry that is going to provide capability advantages for Defence and allow Australian / New Zealand industry to position itself to provide in-service capabilities and through-life-support.

Experience has reinforced the need for potential proposers to understand both Defence’s capability process and the CTD Program. To initiate a successful CTD proposal, a company will need to have an appreciation of Defence’s capability priorities, best gained through early discussions with CTD Program Office and Capability Development Group Staff.  Broad guidance on Defence’s capability priorities is incorporated in the advertisement for the opening of each CTD round and is also available through such publications as the public version of the Defence Capability Plan.  Briefings also remain an important part of the CTD Program and will be conducted both in Canberra and interstate by the CTD Program Office from time-to-time.

Throughout its history the CTD program has proven to be highly successful in its goal of bringing together Defence, research organisations and industry (large and small) to work on developing new technologies to the demonstrator level.

Project Improvement Initiatives

The CTD Program is funded under the Major Capital Investment Program.  In addition to contributing to the cost of projects, the program has a number of funding initiatives aimed at assisting industry, particularly Small to Medium Enterprises, to participate.*  These funding initiatives include:

  • Seed Funding for Detailed Project Proposals.  Initial Proposals which are considered to be appropriate for inclusion in the Program but which need further development to better meet Defence’s requirements may attract Seed Funding for the development of Detailed Proposals.
  • Project Viability Funding. Project Viability Funding is available to help selected companies retain staff and maintain infrastructure allocated to proposed CTD projects while awaiting the application outcome.
  • Concept Definition Funding.  In additional to the annual round call, Defence may accept proposals of varying levels of maturity at any time, and provide funding towards developing such proposals to the level required for the CTD Program.

* Level of applicable funding may vary. Other conditions may apply.