A £169m contract to help build the UK’s new class of nuclear deterrent submarine will support more than 150 jobs in Scotland.
Thales Glasgow is to continue its 106-year tradition of making periscopes for Royal Navy submarines and has been tasked to deliver a multi-sensor combat system mast for the Dreadnought vessels.
The periscopes – which break the surface while the boat remains below the water and allow crew to observe, communicate and navigate – will combine for the first-time visual sensors, digital radar, threat-sensing electronic warfare equipment and communications capabilities.
They will also provide improved television-quality visuals.
The firm said the contract will sustain more than 150 highly-skilled engineering and support jobs across the UK, but mainly focused at its site in Glasgow’s Govan.
Every Royal Navy submarine in service since 1917 has been fitted with a periscope or optronics mast manufactured by Thales at its site on the River Clyde.
The Dreadnought submarines will eventually replace the Vanguard-class vessels that currently carry out the Royal Navy’s continuous at sea deterrent (CASD) operations.
Thales is already on contract to build the ultra-powerful Sonar 2076 system for the Dreadnought, which means it will be providing the vessel’s “eyes and ears” behind the platform’s operational capability.
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Thales – which has provided maritime sensors and systems to more than 50 navies around the world – was awarded the contract from BAE Systems Submarines.
Alex Cresswell, CEO of Thales in the UK, said: “We are extremely proud to say that our combat system mast and sonar will be providing the eyes and ears capabilities of the new Dreadnought class.
“The boat build, led by BAE Systems and partners, will be another milestone showcase of UK engineering skills and innovation.
“It is an incredibly exciting time for the submarine service and its contribution to global security with the build of the Dreadnought class and as we look to the development of the AUKUS submarine programme that will deliver a future capability for Australia and the UK.”