Babcock receives Vanguard system definition contract

Babcock has been awarded a contract for the system definition of the tactical weapons handling and launch system (WHLS) and submerged signal ejector (SSE) for the UK’s future strategic nuclear deterrent, the Vanguard replacement submarine.

The company will reportedly build on previous experience, including the Astute programme and feedback from its in-service support role, to deliver the project to cost, quality and schedule.

While building on its previous WHLS and SSE products for aspects such as weapon alignment, shock mounting and the air turbine pump and firing air system, Babcock will incorporate features such as vertical embarkation, modular torpedo launch tubes and stowages and a weapon-loading mechanism that allows weapons to be loaded from both tiers using the same mechanism.

Where new designs and technologies are being introduced, the company plans to reduce risk through prototype testing, additional modelling and analysis.