Thales Australia’s Acoustics Centre of Excellence (ACoE) in Rydalmere, Western Sydney designs, develops and delivers world-class piezo ceramics and high performing acoustic sensors. The ACoE has supported the Royal Australian Navy for over 40 years through the delivery of world-class sonars, and exports thousands of piezo-ceramics, hydrophones and transducers to Thales in the UK and Thales France.
To nurture the skills and knowledge of the next generation, graduates and interns within the Thales Underwater Systems (UWS) business, participated in a 2-day ‘Sonar Acquaint Course’ that introduced sonar concepts, aspects of underwater acoustics and how they’re applied to create solutions.
The course was led by members of the Thales Australia Underwater Systems Team including: Norman Dong, UWS Engineering Director; Dave Jones, Underwater Sensor Design Expert and Paul Lee, Towed Array Design Authority.
The Thales graduates and interns covered a range of topics throughout, including: foundational and underlying concepts of sonar, discussion of the various platforms that utilise sonars such as submarines and surface ships, theory and technologies within sub-systems and how these contribute to Thales Australia solutions.
Tim Cain, UWS Technical Director, then presented insights into the application of sonar technologies re-imagined and scaled for the world of autonomous vehicles; the prospective platforms of the near-future.
The course concluded with a presentation from Adam Waldie, UWS Sales and Marketing Director, who as an ex-submariner, provided unique insights into customer needs, requirements and considerations.
For our engineers, it is important that the context for the field of underwater science that is applied in our UWS programs is accessible and hopefully demystified. The introduction course tries to present the wider scope of the systems that involve sonar to relate to the activities the engineers may come across in their day-to-day journey within UWS.
Norman Dong, UWS Engineering Director
“The Sonar Introduction Course was a really informative experience. There are so many fascinating and complex concepts that informed my understanding of the sonar systems and arrays we build. My colleagues and I were able to work collaboratively to build our own sonar together, all the while developing our knowledge of how various factors in the operational environment impact a sonar's performance. The course reinforced to us how critical and helpful the technology we design is for sonar operators.”
Meenakshi Kumaran, Graduate Systems / Specialty Engineer