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Conference Pillars

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The UDT 2023 conference discussed the overarching theme, across the below six core pillars.

  1. Platform Design

  2. Sensors & Processing

  3. Weapons & Countermeasures

  4. Un-crewed, Remotely Piloted & Autonomous Systems

  5. Operational Drivers & Imperatives

  6. Big data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning

Scroll down for more information about each pillar.

Please note: More information on the 2024 conference theme, agenda and pillars will be updated in due course.

1.    Platform Design

Plat DesignIs being quiet enough?  Technical and scientific papers exploring new ideas and innovations in a submarine, ASW surface and air platforms, seabed warfare, and MCM platform design are welcomed. Considerations should be made to the integration of ‘modular systems’ and support to other deployed capabilities such as military diving. Especially, those that discuss:

  • Energy storage and conversion
  • Reducing crew numbers through automation or alternative manning
  • Miniaturisation
  • Improving survivability
  • Reducing through life costs and improving value for money
  • Impact of condition based maintenance on signatures, endurance, crew size and crew employment
  • Improving adaptability
  • Modular design and deployment of capability
  • Escape and rescue systems
  • Integration of on board and deployed capabilities

2.    Sensors & Processing

SensorsGaining the advantage and resolving ambiguity; papers are sought that investigate recently identified techniques and developments in MCM, surface ship, helicopter-borne, MPA, seabed, and submarine-based systems. Considerations should be made to the full spectrum of undersea warfare incl. the wider domain awareness needs, and not solely based upon sonar systems. Particular focuses include:

  • Sensor Development
    • Sonar and Acoustic sensors
    • Non-acoustic and non-traditional undersea sensors and detection
  • Sensor Processing
    • Signal processing
    • Post-detection processing and novel techniques for active and passive classification
    • Display processing
    • Tracking and sensor data fusion
    • Multi-sensor / multi-platform processing
  • Novel techniques
    • Exploitation of Big Data
    • Artificial intelligence/ Machine Learning/ Deep Learning
  • Man / machine teaming
    • Alternative for auto cueing/autodetection
  • System performance modelling including
    • Work that explores better understanding of the ocean environment
    • Optimization for environmental conditions
    • Exploitation of modelling and simulation tools

3.    Weapon & Countermeasures

WeaponsAttack and defend - submarine, surface and air-launched weapons designed to operate in the underwater environment and achieve rapid and effective Mission Kills are sought to support this conference stream. In addition, papers that highlight developments in the deployment of other payload systems such as torpedo countermeasures, unmanned systems or other innovative/novel payload systems are welcomed – this may extend to novel RF and non-acoustic / non-lethal effectors. What else does this pillar cover?

  • Torpedoes incl. batteries and propulsion
  • Proportional weapons (e.g. mini-torpedoes, deterrents)
  • Underwater-to-surface (or air) weapons and surface-to-underwater weapons
  • Torpedo countermeasures (hard-kill and soft-kill)

4.    Uncrewed, Remotely Piloted & Autonomous Systems

UnmannedSmall, relatively inexpensive, and available. We want to expand this element in UDT 2023, and technical papers on the design and operations of unmanned, remotely piloted or autonomous systems (attack and defensive systems) are sought. Considerations should be made to the human-machine integration, and the supporting role military diving can play in using small, or tactical systems. In particular, papers that discuss the following will be welcomed:

  • Autonomy and automated decision support
  • Energy storage and conversion
  • Communication and networked operation of UUV/ AUV
  • Underwater sensors for USV
  • Improving Survivability
  • Strengths and weaknesses of uncrewed systems in underwater warfare
  • Further development of uncrewed vehicles in MCM
  • Command and control of uncrewed systems and their integration into operations
  • Verification/validation of uncrewed systems
  • Teaming and exploitation of crewed and uncrewed systems
  • Planning and Evaluation tools
  • Autonomous systems and the moral dilemma

5.    Operational Drivers & Imperatives


With much debate ongoing, papers that explore evolving strategic and operational concepts of design and employment of submarine, ASW, Shallow water MCM, Diving and MCM platforms are welcome. This may also include the utility of Modelling & Simulation across the lifecycle, incl. concepts and war-gaming on future underwater warfare. Examples include; papers looking into Systems of Systems Approach, and the Next Generation Open Architectures are welcomed:

  • Underwater Warfare in the information age
    • Networked operations in the submarine environment
    • Combat System design and integration
    • Data and information management issues including human factors considerations
    • Optimising user experience (UX) in complex data rich environments
    • Novel approaches to collective and team training
    • Decision support technologies such as machine learning and deep learning
    • Communications in the Undersea Environment
    • Managing the Air-Water Interface
    • Undersea networked connectivity
  • Teamworking in the Underwater Environment
  • Balance of investment in the underwater environment
    • Value for Money
    • Upgrade vs replacement programmes
  • Policy constraints and freedoms for the employment of autonomous, robotic or AI based systems
  • Reports on recent manoeuvres and trials
  • Platform and system level reliability and resilience for military use
  • Operating in confined and shallow waters
  • Collaborative and cooperative technical and operational development
  • Training

6.    Big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning

ExploitationA new pillar added to the conference in 2022, Big Data and AI are continuing to play a significant role in improving surveillance, detection, and human performance. AI broadly speaking can have an impact across all pillars for UDT 2023 and across all areas of underwater warfare. Machine Learning in acoustics, for example, or improved Signals Intelligence or analysis of the underwater environment can all lead to beneficial new approaches. This may greatly impact on the ability to accelerate the Processing-Evaluation-Dissemination of products both on and off the platforms (the data-information-knowledge curve) and thus improve overall operational advantage.

Attendee Feedback

  • "UDT 2022 was a focused conference for a specific market, which will not be found on other Naval conferences/exhibitions"
    Jens Higgen
    Sales Director Europe & Latin America IXBlue Gmbh
  • "UDT was as it was in the past. Plenty of chances to meet old customers and suppliers but also opportunities to meet new suppliers and customers."
    Josephus Bogaert
    SMERAS Consultant | JFD Limited
  • "A well organized knowledgeable event in a very silent community, show the relevant operational gaps and some light to future solutions."
    Solomon Moshe
    UW Acoustics Center of Excellence Director | Rafael Advance Defense Systems Ltd
  • “UDT once again proved its worth. It is a great combination of scientific papers, good quality presenters and new information. I was impressed by the volume of novel ideas."
    Captain Herman De Groot
    CO Submarine Service, Royal Netherlands Navy
  • “UDT is always a great opportunity to meet potential new clients, catch up with existing customers and socialise with competitors and colleagues.”
    Andy Buxcey
    Technical Account Manager, TP Group
  • “A fantastic event. UDT provides the opportunity to learn from a huge breadth of experience across a number of key topics.”
    Lieutenant Anthony Gilroy
    Royal Navy, UK
  • "UDT is the only exhibition and conference in the calendar which brings together the underwater technology community. Customers are here, and that's important to us."
    Josh Goodwin
    Business Development Manager, BAE Systems