PMB Defence wins battery supply contract for British submarines

Australian defense company PMB Defence (PMB) has been contracted to supply main battery modules for Royal Navy submarines.

As informed, the contract has been awarded for “Submarine Main Battery TDP Phase 3a – Final Module Design”. Under the contract, the firm will develop and improve an existing submarine main battery module design. Furthermore, the deal includes the initial production standard module build, shock testing, and electromagnetic interference (EMI) pre-qualification.

The contract’s value is £22 million ($29 million). The duration of the contract, as well as the delivery dates, were not disclosed.

PMB was first established in South Australia as the logical site for the delivery of battery systems to Australia’s Collins-class submarine program, given the location of the submarine construction facility at Osborne. PMB began as a local manufacturer to a licensed design sourced from offshore.

The firm has continued supporting the Collins-class battery, cooling and agitation units, battery monitoring probes, and battery analysis tools. It now owns equipment and designs for submarines in the UK, Canada, Sweden and Australia.

The Royal Navy Submarine Service operates a fleet of six submarines of the Trafalgar and Astute classes and four ballistic missile submarines (SSBN) of the Vanguard class.

As the current Vanguard-class submarines reach the end of their lifecycle, they will be replaced by a new class of nuclear submarines: the Dreadnought class.

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Photo: Illustration; Royal Australian Navy Collins-class submarines. Photo: Australian Department of Defense