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Sister company Ensign Subsea Systems awarded major naval contract

5th July, 2019 | 2 minute read
By Gavin Willoughby, Business Development Manager

With a long career in technical sales, marketing and management, Gavin joined applied acoustics as sales manager in 2004. Committed to delivering the best possible customer service, he has overseen the company’s international growth alongside Adam, culminating in two Queen’s Awards for exporting achievement.

Ensign Subsea Systems, a member of the AAE Technologies group of companies, is proud to announce the award of a significant defence contract by an undisclosed major naval power. Utilising the technology produced by its sister company, Applied Acoustic Engineering (AAE), the award is for the supply and support of multiple units of AAE’s Nexus 2 USBL tracking system that are be installed on the Navy’s next generation mine countermeasures (MCM) vessels. Worth in excess of £1.5m GBP, the contract award follows a long period of testing, evaluation and enhancement of the system in close cooperation with the Navy and its prime contractor, heightening the reputation of the Nexus 2 USBL as a fundamental feature within the MCM toolbox.

First launched in the early 2000’s, AAE’s USBL systems have evolved impressively over the years culminating in the latest generation Nexus 2 system, a highly accurate platform capable of operating to ranges of more than 3km and to an accuracy of 0.1% of slant range. An important feature of the Nexus 2 with great significance to the MCM community, is the system’s ability to operate at fast tow speeds of around 10 knots. It’s this ability that allows the system to be used in conjunction with high speed side scan sonars and other towed sonar arrays, crucial for military groups carrying out threat detection and other subsea surveillance tasks.

Speaking from the group’s headquarters in the UK, Gavin Willoughby, Director of Ensign Subsea Systems expanded on the company’s capability in this area. “Although several hundred of the group’s USBL systems are operating in a commercial survey environment, we have now supplied close to 250 subsea tracking systems to the global defence market; and with more than 100 of those primarily installed for MCM operations, I believe we are now the leading name in this specific area of maritime security operations. We are hugely proud to be a trusted supplier of this critical component, and with our expertise in subsea acoustics, our knowledge and background in the defence industry, and our ability to incorporate the needs of our clients into our systems, I’m confident that Ensign Subsea and its sister companies will continue in their role as a primary technology provider to the world’s naval groups”.

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