The Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price to award a $20 million contract to maintain the Royal Australian Navy’s MU90 Light Weight torpedo, demonstrating Thales Australia’s established capability in Australia to sustain guided munitions and weapons systems. The renewal of the in-service support contract for 3 years will be delivered utilising 100% Australian Industry Capability (AIC), and will directly support jobs with Thales in Western Australia, and more in Thales’s local WA supply chain.
In 2020, Thales spent $23 million with 86 West Australian suppliers, almost three-quarters of them SMEs. By maintaining deep industrial capability, a high level of skills and an established local supply chain, Thales is able to provide around the clock support for Royal Australian Navy. Thales Australia are pleased that the Commonwealth’s assessment found Thales’s offer to be a high quality and value-for-money solution.
The MU90 has been successfully supported by Thales Australia’s facility in Rockingham, Western Australia, since it entered into service with the Navy in 2013. Over the past decade, Thales has built a sovereign industrial capability in WA to ensure Australia has the capability to fully support the MU90 torpedo. In addition to the 140 people employed directly by Thales in Western Australia, a further 110 people are employed by Thales’s WA suppliers, according to recent analysis by Accenture.
The MU90 is an advanced lightweight anti-submarine torpedo of the 3rd generation developed by France and Italy for navies of France, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Australia and Poland. It is designed to compete with and outperform the United States-built Mark 54 in the anti-submarine role, and has also been developed in a special MU90 Hard Kill version for torpedo anti-torpedo defence. The MU90 is built by EuroTorp, a consortium of French and Italian companies. Thales Underwater Systems is a member companies of GEIE EuroTorp.