Fincantieri MoU with WTIA for R&D in welding solutions for shipbuilding

Shipbuilder Fincantieri, a participant in the selection process for the Federal Government’s SEA 5000 Future Frigates program, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Welding Technology Institute of Australia (WTIA), to explore cooperation in the design and development of new welding solutions and techniques for shipbuilding in Australia.

The agreement will also involve Cetena, a subsidiary company of Fincantieri, which undertakes research and consultancy programs in the naval and maritime fields, and Istituto Italiano della Saldatura (IIS), the national institute of welding in Italy.

According to the agreement, the organisations will work together to design, develop and implement new and innovative welding production techniques and processes that will provide improved welding solutions to the commercial and naval shipbuilding industries in Australia.

The partnership will see cooperation across training, qualification, and the certification of welders in Australia. It will also see the joint development of new welding and testing procedures, a welding technology and knowledge transfer from Fincantieri’s Italian shipyards, and ongoing industry integration and cooperation.

Director of Fincantieri Australia, Sean Costello said that the MoU demonstrated that Fincantieri is serious about delivering on its promise to transfer knowledge and technology from its 20 shipyards across four continents to Australia.

“Fincantieri has an industry plan to develop a continuous naval shipbuilding industry that will enable Australia to design and build new vessels. This MoU with the WTIA, Cetena and Istituto Italiano della Saldatura, not only demonstrates cooperation between Australian and Italian industries, but shows that we are deeply focused on using our global experience and strength to help grow the skills and capabilities of the workforce, by bringing best practice in welding solutions and techniques to Australia.”

“As part of this agreement, we will work together to ensure the cooperation between the Italian and Australian commercial and naval shipbuilding industries, develop joint training and certifications for local welders, as well as develop joint welding and testing procedures.”

Geoff Crittenden, CEO, WTIA said, “The WTIA is committed to ensuring that all new defence equipment is built by Australian welders and that defence contractors have no reason or excuse for importing skilled labour to deliver these projects. The

signing of this MoU will help ensure that Australian welders, suppliers and contractors have access to new technology and techniques.”

President and CEO of Cetena, Sandro Scarrone said: “We are thrilled to be a part of this important agreement. It provides an opportunity to exchange experience and knowledge and enables the partners to grow and to work together to find common areas of interest. Cetena, as a research and engineering consulting centre is very proud to collaborate with these important institutions and we look forward to commencing a mutually beneficial relationship.”

Sales and marketing director of Istituto Italiano della Saldatura, Giancarlo Canale said: “We strongly believe in this agreement and we are proud be entering into a collaboration with these important global partners. Our highly motivated technicians and engineers will share their know-how and expertise in welding and related technologies and we believe they will make a positive impact.”