French shipbuilder Naval Group and South Australia-based Airspeed, a specialist of composites manufacturing, have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to respond to the design competition launched by Lockheed Martin Australia for the masts of the Royal Australian Navy’s Attack-class submarines.
Under the Future Submarine Program, a total of twelve units will be built, with the first unit slated for delivery in the early 2030s.
Naval Group has developed a new carbon composite mast which is said to offer advanced performance in terms of weight, resistance and operational efficiency, but also in terms of integration with the Attack-class platform.
“Naval Group has developed a solution that will meet all operational requirements of the Royal Australian Navy. Airspeed has impressive capabilities when it comes to composites manufacturing. If successful in the competition, we have decided to start working together as soon as the design phase to ensure these masts will be produced and maintained in South Australia,” François Romanet, Naval Group Pacific CEO, said.
“We are excited to be working on this composites project with Naval Group… If successful in the competition, the opportunity to work on the Future Submarine Program will be a defining step in the development of our company and our national sovereign capabilities and we look forward to be part of this defining national journey,” Steve Barlow, Managing Director of Airspeed, commented.