PMB signs deal to design batteries for defence submarines

Australian supplier PMB Defence and Greek enterprise Systems Sunlight S.A have signed subcontracts to design the main storage batteries for the Attack class submarines.

The batteries will power twelve regional submarines, which will be designed and built in Australia for the Australian Navy under the Federal Government’s $50 billion Attack class program.

Defence minister Linda Reynolds said the design of the batteries are “critical” to the overall design of the submarine and serve as the watercraft’s main power source.

“The selection of these two companies to develop designs of this subsystem is another significant milestone in the design and delivery of the Attack class submarine program,” she said.

“A competitive process will ensure the final designer selected will deliver the very best battery technology to meet the key performance requirements of the Attack class submarine.”

The Department of Defence has engaged PMB to explore a new battery technology that could offer “significantly improved performance” and potentially replace lead-acid batteries over the life of the Attack class submarine.

Defence industry minister Melissa Price said the program provided “significant opportunities” for the Australian defence industry.

“This commitment will provide enormous opportunities for more local companies to be part this world-class advanced manufacturing project,” she said.

PMB, a supplier of energy and specialised engineering solutions for submarine platforms based in Adelaide, is currently contracted to the Department of Defence for the supply and sustainment of batteries of the Collins class submarine fleet at their facility in Osborne.

Further contracts to manufacture batteries in Australia for the Attack fleet will be rewarded following a selection process for the design.