Northrop Grumman Corporation's Sperry Marine
unit has been awarded a contract by BAE SYSTEMS (BAESY)
to supply inertial navigation systems for three
new Astute-class submarines for the U.K. Royal Navy. Each of the new submarines will be fitted with dual enhanced NATO Ship's Inertial Navigation Systems based on Sperry's ring laser
gyro (RLG) systems technology. Equipment deliveries under the $5.8 million contract are scheduled to begin in late 2002 and will be
completed in 2004.
It is reported that the RLG systems provide highly accurate navigation inputs and
precise attitude and heading data for weapons control and combat management systems.
The first of the new 7,200-ton, 318-ft. Astute-class nuclear attack submarines will be launched in 2004. The Ministry of Defense has ordered six of these submarines, which will replace the existing Swiftsure-class and early Trafalgar-class boats. A follow-on contract
for the remainder of the Astute-class platforms is expected in 2002.