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Conference Committee

UDT 2024

Representing the three key elements – users, industry and academia - of the Undersea Defence community, the event's technical planning committee provides unique advice to organisers regarding the needs of their constituency and the upcoming trends being explored across the research base.

The committee assist in shaping the content of the conference ensuring it is relevant and fulfils the expectations of the wider community. Learn more about current members of the committee below.

Committee Members

Chair - Ivan Stace

Chair - Ivan Stace

UDT Committee Chair, Babcock lead for the In Water Engineering Programme, Babcock International Group


Ivan is a former Naval Officer and submariner and has seen extensive service in Attack Submarines. Following a successful career in the MOD, which included sponsoring Attack Submarine design and construction, he has joined the Naval Nuclear sector in Babcock. Initially the Programme Director for the planning of HMS VICTORIOUS’s refit in Devonport, he is now focused on improving Babcock’s approach to In Water Engineering.

Chris Bamforth

Chris Bamforth

Head of Combat Systems Delivery
Submarine Delivery Agency


Chris Bamforth served for 28 years in the Royal Navy as a Weapons Engineer Officer (Submarines) with sub-specialisation in the Combat System. His early career involved service at sea in Swiftsure and Trafalgar class submarines, employment in support at the Waterfront, multiple assignments in training (including at sea), and latterly a focus on capability and acquisition. Since 2016 he has acted as the Customer / Sponsor for the UK submarine Combat System in the Navy Front Line Command / central MoD and, having retired from the Royal Navy in 2022, is now the 1* civilian Head of Combat System Delivery Team in the Submarine Delivery Agency based in MoD Abbeywood, Bristol. He is married and lives near the Lake District owing to a lifelong family passion for the outdoors.

Dr. Peter Beerens

Dr. Peter Beerens

Senior Scientist
TNO


Dr. S. Peter Beerens graduated in theoretical physics at the University of Amsterdam and received his PhD in 1995 at the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research. In he joint 1996 the Sonar Department of TNO. Currently he is senior scientist and programme manager. He has specialised in sonar signal processing and sea trials.

Aymeric Bonnaud

Aymeric Bonnaud

Scientific Director
NAVAL GROUP


Aymeric Bonnaud spent his first 25 years in the French Armament Corps in R&D projects for submarines. First Sonar designer and underwater systems teacher at ENSTA graduate school, he then managed the development of propulsion and weapons systems before joining the strategic marketing team of DCNS. He chaired at that time the NCOIC maritime IPT. He was deputy CTO for energy and underwater systems. He was director of the technological research Centre of Expertise for Mastering Information engineering, human factors and Signatures (CEMIS), before being appointed Scientific Director of the group.

Iain Breckenridge

Iain Breckenridge

Key Account Manager Maritime, Leonardo UK


Iain Breckenridge joined Leonardo Electronics Division (LED) as the KAM Maritime in July 22 post a 37- year career in the Royal Navy primarily in the Submarine Service. His role involves working closely with the Royal Navy to identify opportunities for Leonardo Electronics to deliver capability in the short term and influence for the longer term. He provides SME input to all LED lines of business and provides campaign support to major Maritime Domain opportunities. He also monitors customer feedback on Leonardo delivery performance.

Iain was appointed OBE in March 2008 for his leadership during an under-ice emergency in HMS TIRELESS. He was awarded Charter Master Mariner status in October 2022. Iain has settled in North Norfolk with his wife post the nomadic naval lifestyle that involved 13 house moves during his service. Outside of his work, he enjoys golf at the Sheringham course, long dog walks and naval history.

 

Dr. Simon Colby

Dr. Simon Colby

Technical Authority
BAE Systems


Simon is a Technical Authority responsible for a range of products including Submarine Command Systems and integration of uncrewed systems in to command and combat systems. He has worked for BAE Systems for over 30 years with a career encompassing operational research, early concept and technology development, system architecture, systems engineering and engineering governance. He has worked closely with the government and industry customers and partners in the UK, Australia and many NATO nations.

Peter Don-Duncan

Peter Don-Duncan

Director, Advansys Solutions


Peter graduated in Electronics from the University of Manchester followed by a Masters Degree in Business Administration from the Open University. He has worked in the Maritime sector in various engineering and technical roles for over 38 years. During this time he has been a technical leader for the development of several large and complex active and passive ASW Sonar systems. He has previously led a number of UK MoD/Dstl research programmes frequently working with academia and SME’s on innovative future technology solutions.

Tito Dua

Tito Dua

Business Development Manager, Undersea Division
Lockheed Martin


Tito Dua served 23 years in the US Navy on surface ships.  He spent the majority of his time in the Western Pacific.  After retirement from the USN in 2007 he took a Business Development position with Lockheed Martin Manassas Undersea Division, marketing and selling Submarine combat and weapons control systems to the International (outside the US) market.

Matthew Gleed

Matthew Gleed

Consultant Architect - Royal Navy
BAE Systems Digital Intelligence


Matthew Gleed, Chartered Engineer and Underwater Systems & C4I specialist, from BAE Systems Digital Intelligence in the UK is currently employed client-side in the Royal Navy as a Consultant Architect in the Navy Command HQ, within the Underwater Battlespace team; consulting on technology, strategy and innovation for UK and International projects. 20 years working on a wide range of research and development activities for underwater defence and technology programmes covering submarines, strategic systems and special projects; predominantly working in industry but including in government delivering collaborative projects as well as sea trials activities in the UK, US and European submarine programmes.

Dr. Olav Holberg

Dr. Olav Holberg

Senior Advisor & Deputy Director
Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI)


 

Dr. Jörg Hurka

Dr. Jörg Hurka

Senior Systems Engineer
Atlas Elektronik GmbH


Dr. Jörg Hurka works as a systems engineer at the Submarine Systems Department of ATLAS ELEKTRONIK GmbH, Bremen, Germany. He is a member of the UDT Technical Programme Committee since 2011.

Jim Kelly

Jim Kelly

CTO, Sensors and Processing
ATLAS ELEKTRONIK UK Ltd


James (Jim) is Chief Technology Officer for Atlas Elektronik UK Ltd with over 35 years in defence R&D and systems development. After graduating with a degree in Physics he started his career working on the development of ASW avionics systems before moving onto submarine sonars. In the early 90s he moved to the MoD research labs specialising in mine warfare. This lead to development of simulation and modelling tools, novel mine sweeping and mine hunting systems and signature management systems with QinetiQ and Atlas Elektronik UK. In 2014 he became CTO, after a brief spell leading the Operations Division he returned to the CTO role in 2021.

Dr. Alain Maguer

Dr. Alain Maguer

Head, Engineering and Information Technology
Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation (CMRE)
NATO Science and Technology Organisation (STO)


Dr Alain Maguer got his PhD in underwater acoustics and signal processing in 1986 from the University of Lyon in France. He has been working in the maritime domain for around 30 years. After his PhD, for 15 years, he worked as a signal processing scientist in Thales and the NURC and was also in charge for three years of the research team in Thales Australia. From 2002, He led both technical manager and project manager positions in the fields of Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), Mine Warfare and Maritime Security. He came back to CMRE in 2007 where he is currently the Head of Engineering and Information Technology Division at CMRE. His fields of interest and expertise are ASW, mine warfare, maritime security, underwater acoustics and signal processing, autonomous vehicles, underwater communication, gliders and towed arrays, scientific IT networks and data management.

Jeff Owen

Jeff Owen

Consultant
AtebTec Ltd


Jeff graduated in Maritime Technology, and has spent 35 years working in the maritime domain on projects across the globe. His initial roles focused on research and development projects in hydrodynamics and naval architecture, involving both theoretical and experimental work into vehicle hydrodynamics, propulsor design and towed systems.

Since that time he has played a significant role in the integration of payload systems into a number of platform (surface ships and submarines) programmes, with an involvement in 6 different first of class submarine designs and a number of surface ship programmes. Alongside these platform programmes he has contributed to a large number of maritime R&D projects. In his current role as an Independent Consultant, he is involved with a number of organisations, from small startups to large companies, helping them grow their business globally.

Adrian Pierce

Adrian Pierce

Naval Advisor 
Clarion Events


A Naval professional with over 35 years’ experience at Sea, on Operations and in Headquarters roles, Adrian Pierce qualified as an Anti-submarine Warfare officer and specialist Navigator. He commanded a Mine Counter-measures Vessel and Frigates at Sea and had Staff roles at sea and ashore, including in Joint and NATO Staffs. Since his last command at Sea, he has had Joint and Maritime roles predominantly in leading warfare training and operational planning, where he was responsible for assimilating the cross-government demand for the Navy and programme delivery across all Maritime Assets including Ships, Submarines, Aircraft and Marines. Upon leaving the Royal Navy he has worked as a maritime consultant working in areas that have included Maritime Domain Awareness.

Hannah Rose

Hannah Rose

Acoustic Engineer, Thales UK


 

Nick Sheppard

Nick Sheppard

Technical Director - Maritime Mission Systems
Thales UK


Nick has over 20 years’ experience in Maritime systems and system architectures covering underwater and above water platforms. Through a career which started in UK government and now in industry Nick has been involved in the research and development of sensors, command systems and new autonomous vehicle capabilities. Nick’s current role is Underwater Communications Solution Architect within Thales UK, a role which involves development of advanced underwater communications solutions and their integration within complex systems-of-systems, including addressing the through air-sea interface and connectivity into wider above water networks.

Tim Vickery

Tim Vickery

Principal Scientist, Platform Systems Division
Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl)


Tim joined Dstl, part of the UK MoD, in 2006 following over 20 years in the Royal Navy where he served as an ASW Warfare Officer at sea and staff roles in Northwood HQ and DE&S Abbey Wood.  He is currently a Principal Adviser to the Underwater Systems Programme, which delivers the UK’s MoD funded ASW and submarine related Science and Technology through Government and Industry.

Hendrik Wehner

Hendrik Wehner

Project Manager Engineering
thyssenkrupp Marine Systems GmbH


Joining thyssenkrupp Marine Systems as a Concept Design Engineer in 2015, Hendrik Wehner worked on several concept designs of extra-large uncrewed underwater vehicles and submarines.


In his current role as Project Manager Engineering he is part of a team delivering four submarines to an Asian customer.


He holds an MSc in Ship and Offshore Technology from University of Strathclyde and Hamburg University of Technology. Constant discovery of new facets of the underwater space is what keeps him going.

Nigel Whybrow

Nigel Whybrow

Future Submarines & Technology Director
Babcock International Group


Nigel considers himself very fortunate to have worked all his career in the underwater systems arena and to have done so with insightful people, on interesting and demanding projects when invention & experiment were seen as essential activities.  His involvement has spanned high level concept and analysis work (as Project Lead) to the management of super-specialist teams and the direction of operational and material support for submarines at Chief Engineer level.

Fundamentally an engineer with a background in the thermodynamics and fluid mechanics of powerplants and high speed propulsion, his work responsibilities have included the definition of novel underwater vehicles and their operational integration.  At Marconi Underwater Systems in the 1980s he was technical lead for very early investigations into AUVs where the issues were ‘what could and should an autonomous vehicle be asked to do’ as much as how could it be done.

Nigel is the Future Submarines & Technology Director at Babcock International Group where he is involved in future design and technology planning and in external consultancy.  He is a Fellow of both the IMechE and RINA and author of numerous papers including many presented at UDT.