MORE than 500 shipyard workers braved driving winds and torrential rain to attend the third Engineering, Technology and Innovation Exhibition to be staged at the Barrow site.
As one of this soggy summer’s freak storms wreaked havoc across Cumbria, those who battled through to the exhibition got the chance to find out about products ranging from military and naval loudspeakers, microphones and headsets to underwater electrical connectors, fibre optics and cables.
Existing and potential suppliers displayed their products to BAE Systems Maritime – Submarines personnel, on 70 stands.
Tony Johns, future submarines director, said: “HMS Astute has proved that it is a world class submarine.
“What we are looking for is innovation and technology to bring costs down, as well as sharing ideas and discussing solutions for the benefit of current and future submarine construction requirements.”
The third exhibition, which was held in June, was attended by the largest number of existing, and especially potential, suppliers so far, including a number from the Barrow and Furness area.
Lisa Jones-Taylor, from event partner Nu-Tech Associates, said: “Many of the companies attending were new to Barrow shipyard and keen to show technology that is in use, either on other defence projects or in other industry sectors.”
David Hebden, from communication systems supplier Vitavox, said: “We have been talking to engineers who are working on the Successor programme and looking at whether equipment we have delivered to Astute can be transferred to Successor.”
Joe Eardly from actuator supplier Goodrich, said: “We are an aerospace company, so this is a new area for us. We would like to gain an understanding of the submarine market, what the industry’s needs are, and how we can help move technologies along.”