AMC press release
A Memorandum of Understanding for a Thales presence at the Maritime Defence Innovation and Design Precinct was signed by University of Tasmania Vice- Chancellor Professor Rufus Black and Thales Australia Chief Executive Officer Chris Jenkins in Sydney today.
Thales is the first defence industry prime to commit to the Precinct which aims to drive defence-related research and development projects in a world class research innovation hub.
The Precinct is designed to help the Australian Government to deliver on its $90 billion Naval Shipbuilding Enterprise, including the $50 billion Future Submarine Program, by supporting the high value testing and evaluation needs of the RAN. The Australian Government has committed $30 million to Phase 1 of the Precinct.
AMC, Australia’s national institute for maritime education, training and research,has a suite of the Southern Hemisphere’s best maritime related researchfacilities which will enable critical design inputs into the building of 57 naval vessels over the next thirty years.
Professor Black said Tasmania was uniquely positioned to play an important rolein the regeneration of Australia’s naval capabilities. “Our relationship with Thales is based on a combination of the distinctivestrengths of our people and our facilities and the nature of our island homeitself,” Professor Black said.
“We have world-renowned expertise in maritime research and engineering, wehave state of the art facilities, and we have access to Tasmania’s incrediblelakes, which are vital to our work with Thales.
“Our advantage lies not just in who we are and what we can do, but also wherewe are.”
Thales has a long involvement in Tasmania having undertaken sonar testingresearch in Tasmania’s deep, cold and acoustically quiet lakes since 1991.
The MOU comes on top of a Thales Australia, University of Tasmania, AMC and AMOG Consulting agreement last year aimed at making Tasmania the home of state-of-the-art trials and test facilities for submarine and surface ship sonar systems.
Thales Australia has a critical role in upgrading the sonar systems on the existing Collins Class submarines.
AMC Principal Michael van Balen AO said the MOU would help AMC in its aim tosupport development of Australia’s sovereign shipbuilding capability.
“AMC and Thales’ involvement in the Precinct will make the niche capabilities and skillsets at AMC available for defence requirements for both Defence anddefence industry,” he said.
“As a result, there will be a flow through of defence spending into the commercial realm in Tasmania whilst we contribute to the broader national defence endeavour.
“The Precinct will be a venue where contractors, Government agencies and disparate parties come together to conduct tests and look at the design issues they are facing marking out the way forwards for better design, operated more efficiently with greater safety.”
Mr Jenkins said: “We will be working with AMC and industry participants likeAMOG Consulting on advanced acoustic measurements to be taken at a wide range of speeds, over a number of distances and with a high degree of precisionusing equipment designed with the expertise of the AMC.”