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Contract awarded to upgrade Royal Navy torpedoes

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LONDON (BNS): The UK's Ministry of Defence (MOD) has awarded BAE Systems a £270 million contract to upgrade the Spearfish Heavyweight Torpedo for the Royal Navy's submarines.

Following the completion of the design phase, existing torpedoes will be upgraded by BAE Systems at its Broad Oak facility in Portsmouth to the new design with initial deliveries in 2020 continuing until 2024.

The upgrade, known as Spearfish Mod 1 extends the life of the torpedo, improves safety through the introduction of an Insensitive Munitions warhead and by utilising a single fuel system and provides more capable data links between the weapon system and the launching vessel.

This results in capability improvements for the Royal Navy as well as significant reduction in through-life operating costs.

The anti-submarine and anti-surface Spearfish torpedoes are currently deployed on the BAE Systems designed and built Trafalgar and Vanguard submarines, as well as the Astute Class submarines.

Spearfish can be used in defensive and offensive situations and its advanced design delivers maximum warhead effectiveness at high speed with outstanding manoeuvrability, low radiated noise, advanced homing and sophisticated tactical intelligence.

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