Building on the strategic alliance between Australia, the UK and the US, Perth is expected to be a hub for designing and building autonomous underwater vessels, putting the West Australian city on track to become a regional powerhouse in undersea technology.
In a boost for Western Australia’s naval and defence industry, Minister for Defence Industry Paul Papalia, CSC, has acknowledged that WA is well positioned to become a regional hub for undersea technology.
Minister Papalia is expected to make his comments as he officially opens the Bibra Lake, Perth, facility for Australian owned and operated Marine Tech Systems.
With plans to double its local workforce within 12 months, Marine Tech Systems is developing autonomous technology that will help gather vital intelligence and data while reducing risks to personnel and significantly reducing the environmental impact compared with conventional practices.
Marine Tech Systems (a subsidiary of Blue Ocean Monitoring) has been providing undersea autonomy expertise to British and Australian defence agencies since 2016.
Mike Deeks, CSC, a former Naval Commodore (and most recently WA Agent General), who was recently appointed by Blue Ocean Monitoring as group managing director, is confident that Perth will become a regional powerhouse in undersea technology.
“We have an ambitious plan for further development of our technology over the next couple of years,” Deeks said.
“Perth can become the undersea technology and operations hub for the Indo-Pacific region.”
As a former Navy clearance diver, Minister Papalia is expected to stress the importance of autonomous underwater vessel technology in supporting divers and submariners who operate in highly challenging and often dangerous environments.
Blue Ocean Monitoring and Marine Tech Systems are proudly West Australian businesses built by Australian university graduates, Defence and defence industry personnel.
Subscribe to the Defence Connect daily newsletter.
Be the first to hear the latest developments in the defence industry.
The Blue Ocean Monitoring group is aiming to build a global business, after establishing its presence in the UK, the Australian company is now aiming to expand into the US.
In addition to its Defence contracts, Blue Ocean Monitoring has a joint venture with energy giants BP and Woodside, known as Blue Ocean Seismic Surveys (BOSS). BOSS is developing new and disruptive autonomous technology for ocean bottom seismic surveys and activities in support of carbon capture and storage, offshore windfarms and other applications.
The company also has a joint venture with Vertech, known as Blue Ocean Marine Systems, which specialises in underwater surveys and technological solutions for the offshore marine sector.
[Related: EOS unveils new directed energy T2000 turret]