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February 4, 2022

Royal Navy QEC carriers receive ‘super release’ of software updates

The updates will support the aircraft carriers during their deployments this year and beyond.

BAE Systems’ Combat Systems teams have provided software updates to the British Royal Navy’s two Queen Elizabeth Class (QEC) aircraft carriers.

The ‘super release’ software updates have been delivered as part of a seven-year Joint Service Support 2 (JSS2) contract.

The company’s teams collaborated with the UK Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) and the Royal Navy to provide the updates to the fleet’s combat mission systems.

The newest capability and availability will keep the Carrier Strike Group and NATO flagships prepared for deployments this year and in future.

The core updates delivered include shared infrastructure (SI) system updates to back supplementary mission system capabilities, and combat management system updates to improve safety and performance.

The teams also provided Tactical Data Links integration updates to expand interoperability with task force platforms.

Combat Systems equipment delivery director Steve Carter said: “These last few months have been incredibly busy preparing this ‘super release’. Our teams have worked tirelessly to collectively develop, integrate, and deliver the required upgrades and updates to the Royal Navy in a short space of time, to bring detailed, complex changes to the mission systems of the QEC Carriers.

“The most crucial of these updates has been to the Tactical Data Link interfaces, which are critical to enabling the ships’ to communicate and share data with other Royal Navy platforms and allies, essential for ensuring interoperability.”

The capability updates will now be delivered to the UK Type 45 destroyers, which will join the deployments of the two QECs.

The destroyers with the new upgrades have already completed their Factory Acceptance Testing.

Currently, they are undertaking Combat System Integration at the company’s Maritime Systems Integration centre. Following this, platform harbour and sea trials will be performed.

In 2019, BAE Systems reached an updated integration services agreement with the Royal Navy to deliver essential mission system support to QEC aircraft carriers.

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