29 Jan 2019

DASA seeking solutions to account for and track personnel aboard HMS Queen Elizabeth

This forthcoming Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) competition is looking for innovative solutions to account for and track personnel aboard the UK Aircraft Carrier, HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH (QNLZ), improving safety and efficiency whilst reducing administrative burden for staff.

An initial £250k is expected to be available through DASA to fund multiple proposals of 9 months’ duration, including an on-board testing period; it is anticipated that greater funding may be made available subject to the proposals received. There will be a maximum funding limit of £125k per proposal.

In July 2018, DASA, the Royal Navy Innovation Team Discovery Assessment and Rapid Exploitation (DARE) and the Defence Innovation Unit (DIU) held an innovation ‘Get the Ship in Shape’ event on the HMS QNLZ in HM Naval Base, Portsmouth. This event brought together the Defence innovation community, UK industry, academia and the crew of the ship to find rapid solutions to pressing challenges for the Navy. Several key challenges were identified including the need to accurately account for and track personnel on board while alongside shore and at-sea.

The HMS QNLZ is the largest ship the UK has ever built for the Royal Navy and while alongside shore may have in excess of 2000 people on board at any one time. It is extremely difficult and challenging to account for staff on board during Emergency Clear Lower Deck/Emergency Stations, Operation Thimblehunt (manual personnel accounting and search), Defence Watches, Action Stations and Pre Sailing Souls on Board scenarios. This has been validated by real incidents aboard HMS QNLZ. Current personnel tracking systems use a physical peg board (for core Ship’s Company), a T-card holder (for accredited visiting contractor/shore support staff) and a visitor log (for all other visitors) to record individuals on board and to account for personnel.

This competition has two proposed challenges:

Challenge 1: Accounting for personnel (mandatory)

  • Accounting for the number of personnel on-board the HMS QNLZ using a positive log system.

Challenge 2: Real-time, or close to real-time, personnel tracking (optional)

  • Real-time tracking of personnel on-board the HMS QNLZ; for emergency situations which require immediate knowledge of all staff locations.

Full details of this competition, including technology readiness level (TRL)requirements, will be available when the full competition document is published.

The total funding available for this competition is expected to be at least £250k. Each proposal must be no greater than £125k.

The competition opened 25th January 2019 with the full competition document  released on DASA’s website, and will close 8th March 2019. Proposals must be submitted to the DASA submission service, for which you will have to register.

Please email accelerator@dstl.gov.uk with any questions.

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