Thales to Open New Integrated Service Centre in Italy

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French defence firm, Thales will open in La Spezia Naval Base (Liguria) a new Integrated Service Centre dedicated to the maintenance of Thales Sonars.

The Service Centre will improve partnership with the Italian Navy and offer greater proximity and reactivity with the end users.

The Italian Navy will benefit from reduced intervention times to maximise availability of underwater research/exploration systems, which are implemented on board minesweepers and frigates.

Thales will be the Navy’s privileged partner for the maintenance of sonars installed on minesweepers and frigates thanks to waterfront support operating in the naval bases of La Spezia and Taranto.

“The creation of the Integrated Service Centre in La Spezia is a commitment that Thales Italia has undertaken to strengthen the partnership with the Italian Navy, engaged in growing surveillance and intervention tasks that require ever-efficient integration of on-board sonar with the integrated tactical network (ITN) of the Navy. By having an entirely Italian team of engineers and technicians, we are sure to offer an important customer such as the Navy the proximity necessary to minimize reaction times at all levels of intervention”, said CEO & Country Director, Donato Amoroso, Thales in Italy.

“As a key industrial partner of the navies, we have one obsession: to provide our customers with ever-better service and support in an increasingly complex environment. By acting as closely as possible to our customers, and offering them a high level of responsiveness and flexibility, we can ensure a high level of availability for their systems, which is essential to their missions’ success,” said Managing Director Underwater Systems, Thales, Gwendoline Blandin-Roger.

The minehunters branch of the Italian Navy, operating from its base at La Spezia, in the heart of the Mediterranean, forms the core of the navy’s current domestic mine countermeasures (MCM) activities, and supports also to the NATO MCM specific responsibilities. Thales’s decades of experience in sonar systems, deep expertise across the discipline, and flexibly designed support services are key to ensure sonar mission readiness.

The new Thales Integrated Service Centre will double the number of specialised resources currently employed among engineers, technicians and bid managers. The installation will cover an area of 1000m² and will maximise availability to the Navy and operational efficiency for each level of maintenance.

The staff and skills of the Thales Integrated Support Centre will also be progressively reinforced at the Taranto naval base in line with a model dedicated to establishing capabilities and resources in close proximity to the Italian fleet.

The cooperation between the Italian Navy and Thales in the critical sector of underwater warfare systems has been consolidated over time. The frigates and minesweepers of the Italian Navy have been operating for years with Thales sonar suites with a globally recognised “state-of-the-art” submarine surveillance capability.

Thales underwater sensor technology in the various segments, including mine warfare and anti-submarine warfare, is the result of decades of research, dedicated investments and co-operation with the Navies of many countries. The world leadership in the underwater sector is a record obtained with passion and determination that today the Group wants to consolidate by offering its customer an advanced and local support organisation.

With the creation of the new Integrated Support Centre in La Spezia, Thales Italia will be able to centralize all maintenance activities in a single dedicated organisation: from training to simulation, from the integration and installation of electronic and mechanical hardware to the maintenance and testing. –shp/thlef/aaa (Image: William Domenichini)