Known as the Maritime Collaborative Enterprise (MarCE), it will bring together specialists in combat systems from Naval Ships and Submarines, both part of BAE Systems Maritime, with other companies, small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and academia to provide the MOD with expertise and innovation above and underwater.
BAE Systems will create and manage this collaborative enterprise to deliver a research programme under the management of the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), part of the MOD. It will involve new players, including those without a background in defence, in order to stimulate fresh thinking and innovation.
A key feature of the BAE Systems approach is understanding how to turn paper concepts into reality by applying them directly to submarine and surface ship platforms. The Maritime team has a long track record of working closely with technology companies and academia to deliver leading edge capabilities to UK Armed Forces.
Speaking at Cityforum in London, Defence Minister Philip Dunne said: “Encouraging technological innovation to flourish is vital to our national security and our prosperity. The contract is designed to maximise the reach of our Science and Technology funding, led by a team from BAE Systems, with numerous participants in the research, from large companies, to academia, to SMEs.”
“A major milestone for the maritime domain”
Dstl’s Maritime Domain Lead David Sherburn said: “Awarding this contract is a major milestone for the maritime domain, and an exemplar of how Dstl, industry and academic partners work together, ensuring comprehensive support from the UK defence supply base for the benefit of UK Armed Forces. This consortium will enhance the MOD’s research into above and underwater capability and provide real impact for MOD.”
BAE Systems Maritime – Submarines Combat Systems Director Ian Hawkes added: “This is a great opportunity for innovators to get involved, bringing their ideas and expertise to the maritime domain. The Collaborative Enterprise is a good basis for productive working relationships between diverse organisations.”
Naval Today Staff,November 21, 2012; Image: BAE Systems