QinetiQ Consortium to Provide Engineering Services for British Type 26, 31 Frigates

A consortium led by British defense company QinetiQ has received a contract to provide engineering services for the UK’s future Type 26 City-class and Type 31 Inspiration-class frigates.

The four-year project, valued at 13 million pounds ($16.3 million), will deliver subject matter expertise support to all “essential engineering outputs” related to the combat system acquisition and integration of the warship programs.

These activities include sourcing combat systems and supporting dockyard deliveries facilitated under the UK government’s information and equipment acquisition framework.

Along with the City and Inspiration frigate developments, the consortium will work closely with Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) to abide by environmental and legal requirements.

In addition, the team will oversee the management and coordination of deliverable articles to Portsdown Technology Park in Portsmouth.

The Aurora Engineering Partnership, which comprises QinetiQ, Canadian firm AtkinsRéalis, and London-based BMT, will handle services stipulated by the contract until Type 26 and Type 31 frigates’ planned induction into the Royal Navy in the late 2020s.

“The success of the programme to date is predicated on promoting the best outcome focussed behaviours,” Type 26 Combat Systems Team Leader Capt. Shaun Riordan stated.

“This is not a transactional programme; [Naval Ships Delivery Group] very much considers the Warship Combat System Support Service (WC3S) as part of the core [Ministry of Defence] team critical to delivering these capable platforms into service with the Royal Navy.”

Supporting ‘Smooth and Timely’ Processes

According to QinetiQ, the contract will enable “rapid re-prioritisation of outputs” and significantly decrease related costs in the acquisition processes for the UK’s next-generation frigate programs.

Among the contract’s key advantages is sustaining a dedicated allocation of “suitably qualified and experienced personnel” to supervise delivery risk in a dynamic approach, further supporting “technical hurdles” in the warships’ nearing acceptance phases and entry into the naval force.

“We are extremely pleased to be continuing our support to the DE&S Ships and wider Royal Navy through the [Engineering Delivery Partner] Warship Combat System Support Service,” QinetiQ Maritime Director Stu Hider said.

“Recognising the importance of a smooth and timely Frigates Transition, the team is working collaboratively and finding increasingly efficient and effective ways to support T26, T31 and future acquisition programmes in de-risking entry into service with the required capability at the right time.”

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