The environment in which we work is increasingly digital, which brings both challenges and opportunities. It’s a landscape Babcock understands, allowing us to plan, compete and work in partnership with our customers for our joint success. Many of our customers are on a technology journey too, so by working together, we’ll find the right technology solution – whatever the challenge.
As our customers’ assets have grown in complexity, they’re turning to us for their technology solutions. From defence to aviation, from marine to nuclear, our experts exert technical authority to make better decisions for, and with, our customers wherever they are in the world.
As a Group we focus on growing and developing our data and digital solutions, building on the progress made in areas including advanced and additive manufacturing and synthetics and simulation technology and our autonomous systems programmes. It’s not just the technology we use, it’s the innovation we bring and how we apply our engineering insight that sets us apart.
Data and digital
We will continue to invest in digital and data solutions to maximise the information advantage these technologies can bring. They will help us meet the complex engineering challenges our customers face, whether it is digitising or even retrofitting digital twins onto legacy assets or managing satellites in space.
Alongside our deep engineering experience, digital and data technologies will allow us to better understand, predict and enhance the performance of the assets we manage, make better engineering decisions, reduce risk and improve service delivery. We are already delivering this for our customers across contracts such as the Future Maritime Support Programme and DSG.
Given the scale and complexity of the contracts and assets we manage, data exploitation, integration and intelligence will be a key part of our journey along with human performance. We have recently invested in a data integration platform which will allow us to deliver a vast array of digital services and solutions to drive increased efficiencies in time and money.
From warships to nuclear power stations, we combine engineering insight with a range of digital technologies and data analytics. It’s an approach that provides a powerful and dynamic way of interpreting information, in real time, giving our customers a complete and interactive view of that intelligent support. Our approach is iSupport 360. iSupport360 allows us to deliver maximum value for our customers in the way we manage their assets – it delivers the added readiness, performance, efficiency and value that our customers demand.
Babcock is a leading, large scale manufacturing authority in the UK with our experts leading and collaborating on a number of high-profile advanced manufacturing projects across our core markets. Digital solutions such as advanced and additive manufacturing are becoming increasingly significant for Babcock in the management of complex, critical, legacy, and low volume assets. Printing parts in this way supports our sustainability journey as we realise the benefits of reduced inventory holding and energy consumption.
In January 2023 we became the Ministry of Defence’s first supplier of 3D metal printed parts used to sustain vehicles in the British Army’s active armoured fleet. This was a major milestone for Babcock and the customer in tackling the growing challenges of technical and commercial obsolescence.
Our relationship with Additure allows us to further develop our digital manufacturing capability, focussing on increasing platform availability, collaborating on new digital solutions and better managing the challenges around complex, critical, low-volume parts.
Our work in this area is part of a longer-term global advanced manufacturing investment programme. Our vision is to develop a capability that will enable the printing of components anywhere as the need arises, whether onboard vessels at sea or at military sites abroad, giving those on the front line the ability to print on demand.
Autonomous systems and automation
We are excited about the future of autonomous systems as we explore the development of new types of uncrewed vehicles. Over the coming year we will work closely with industry and academic partners to develop intellectual property (IP) alongside new and disruptive technology applications, where are seeing significant demand both in the UK and overseas.
We were the first major defence company to be invited to host an event at the UK MOD’s new flagship technology and innovation hub, The Defence ‘BattleLab’, bringing together SMEs for a live autonomous vehicle demonstration and demonstrating our commitment to innovate in this area. This marked a milestone in autonomy, heralding the first live demonstration of an autonomous multi-vehicle convoy across an array of SME-designed technology and showcasing our commitment to innovate with others.
In May 2023 we responded to a customer requirement to develop, build and flight-test a novel jet powered Unmanned Aircraft System solution. Collaborating with SMEs and academia, we delivered a rapid prototype to first successful flight in just 19 days.