Arvus Group covers an unusually wide range of industries which include electronics, acoustics, geothermal power generation, atmospheric and geology monitoring, nuclear and chemical sciences.
At the helm is Matthew Simmons, a man that is quite literally shooting for the stars ever since he signed up for Square Kilometre Array (SKA). "Exhilarated!" says Simmons, "That's what I felt when John Houlker from NTZE sat us down in 2009 and shared the news of this international mega-science project. From that moment I personally made a commitment to find a way to be involved."
The Square Kilometre Array, or SKA, is a next-generation radio telescope currently planned by institutions from over 20 countries. The SKA will be the largest and most capable radio telescope ever constructed. During its 50+ year lifetime, it will expand our understanding of the universe and drive technological development worldwide.
Australia and New Zealand have worked together to establish an ideal candidate SKA site in Western Australia, build the Australian SKA Pathfinder telescope and maximise participation in the SKA. On 25 May 2012, the SKA Organisation announced that Australia-New Zealand and southern Africa will each host components of the SKA telescope.
The project aims to produce a radio telescope with a combined collecting area of one million square metres - equivalent to about 200 football pitches. It will offer new insights into the formation of the universe, shining a light on black holes, stars and galaxies. This astronomical megastar might even detect alien life.
Simmons expressed that the SKA project will be a significant opportunity for New Zealanders to excel on a large scale international project using unique thinking processes and an adaptable industry platform. "We read about New Zealand companies doing amazing things all over the world, but we have not yet grasped the importance of collective branding from an industry process perspective." Simmons says.
Arvus Group is involved in SKA at a technical and business support process level. While Simmons was in Portugal for the SKA Power conference last month, it was made evident to him many times that competent out of the box thinking is not only going to be needed on all aspects of this 50 year plus project, but it's absolutely required right now.
Simmons is challenging and encouraging other SMEs to get involved. "We have an opportunity as a nation to stick our heads a little higher, get on a plane, and say Hey! We can help…what are your problems? I'm sure we can solve them better and cheaper than your current solutions. It's all about gaining trust and building relationships."
It does require some travel investment, however Simmons stresses that this is a multi-national project bursting with potential for networking opportunities and close international company alliances, and the potential cannot be underestimated.
Right now the SKA Project needs a multitude of innovative solutions in data processing, data storage, reducing RF interference and power consumption. "In terms of New Zealand and company branding potential, this SKA is going to massive!" says Simmons.