The Fund

The Sir Ross and Sir Keith Smith Fund commemorates the achievements of two distinguished South Australian pioneer aviators - Captain Sir Ross Smith K.B.E., M.C., D.F.C., A.F.C., and his brother Lieutenant Sir Keith Smith K.B.E.

In 1986 Lady (Anita) Smith, widow of Sir Keith Smith, bequeathed her entire estate to the establishment of the Sir Ross & Sir Keith Smith Fund and directed that the income of the Fund be applied in perpetuity for "advancement in the State of South Australia of the science of aeronautics and of education therein".

Lady Smith recognised the need to stimulate local knowledge and innovation in aerospace technology. Her vision encompassed "each and every aspect of all means of human conveyance or transportation through the air and inner and outer space".

Australian Executor Trustees is the Trustee of the Fund.

A specialist Advisory Committee provides continuing guidance to the Trustee to ensure that the objectives of the Fund are being achieved.

The Trustee undertakes exclusive or joint funding of:

  • Appropriate education or research programmes in approved tertiary institutions
  • Scholarships or fellowships for approved research
  • Sponsorship funds for activities which promote aerospace technology and education.

Apply to the fund

To date, grants, scholarships and sponsorships in excess of $10 million have been made for:

  • Active control of aircraft interior noise
  • Imaging systems for aerospace vehicles
  • Atmospheric airborne research
  • Aeronautical computational fluid dynamics
  • Air traffic surveillance and maintenance
  • Optimisation of air traffic flows for airports and air traffic regulators
  • Aviation systems safety research
  • Reconfigurable computing for uninhabited aircraft applications
  • Research and development of unmanned vehicles for mining exploration
  • Research and development of a seaplane
  • Postgraduate scholarships to Cranfield University in the United Kingdom
  • Undergraduate scholarships to The University of Adelaide, Flinders University, University of South Australia and The University of Sydney
  • Postgraduate scholarships to Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology and The University of Adelaide
  • Funding for the Sir Ross & Sir Keith Smith Lectureship in Aeronautics at The University of Adelaide
  • Sponsorships to Royal Aeronautical Society, South Australian Space School, Australian Fluid Mechanics Conference and Mid North Christian College
  • Sponsorships to secondary students to attend a World Space Congress in the USA and a National Youth Science Forum Study Tour of Russia
  • T-Ray imaging system for aerospace applications
  • Stability and control of wingtip vortices
  • Establishment of a centre of excellence for aeronautical research and education
  • Establishment of an aero-acoustics research capability
  • Establishment of large-scale wind tunnel and jet propulsion teaching facilities
  • New air-conditioning system for general aviation aircraft

Good News Stories

  • South Australian Space School

    Since 2001 the Sir Ross and Sir Keith Smith Fund has provided sponsorship funding to the South Australian Space School (SASS).
  • Mid North Christian College

    Since 2005 the Sir Ross and Sir Keith Smith Fund (Smith Fund) has provided sponsorship funding to Mid North Christian College for the development of an Aviation Pathways Program.
  • Studies - Cranfield University

    Read Mark Roots' story - from support through the fund at the beginning of his career to his experience in the Rotary Wing Test area at DERA Boscombe Down and Australian Aerospace.