On behalf of the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD), Qinetiq, an Aurora Engineering Partner, awarded the naval systems supplier Babcock a five-year configuration contract to provide the Royal Navy (RN) and Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) with a Surface Ship Definition Database (SSDD) – a digital tool for the management of platform related data.

Operation of the Master Record Data Centre (MRDC), the core facility for ship information configuration services, will deliver activities including:

  • Equipment ship fit
  • Ship datum document
  • Defect report management via the Surface Ship Equipment Data Record

The work of the MRDC ensures that the necessary systems and equipment – including maintenance and spares – are available when and where they are required to meet RN and RFA demand.

Digital and integration shift

The MoD is eager to integrate the RN into the joint force. The RN stipulated in its Digital and Data Plan, 2022-2025:

“The RN must remain aligned with all… organisations to mainstream cyber across the maritime domain but also inform them of the unique contribution that the RN can make to cyber operations and provide the demand signal for cutting-edge and resilient cyber systems.”

The SSDD interfaces with numerous MoD systems, enabling Babcock to efficiently deliver a holistic, surface ship management solution.

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The contract will benefit existing and future programmes, including the Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers, Type 31 general purpose frigates, and the Type 26 frigates, while upgrading existing data management systems to aid through-life support programmes.

“Our customers, and the mission we share, inspire us each and every day to strive for excellence. We’re by their side, enabling them to fulfil their duty, working closely with them to support their critical assets for decades and we look forward to continuing this strong relationship,” Neil Young, Babcock’s engineering and technology director stated.