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Ultra Group has confirmed a significant additional strategic commitment to Canada in the form of new investment to transform its Dartmouth, Nova Scotia site into a global sonar centre of excellence. This comes after recent announcements by Ultra of contract awards for the Hull Mounted Sonar (HMS) and Variable Depth Sonar (VDS) subsystems on the Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC) programme.

The Dartmouth facility will be significantly modernised, reconfigured for expanded capacity and networked to Ultra’s other sonar sites in the UK and Australia. These enhancements will provide the world-class sonar capability being delivered for the CSC, as well as sonar systems on other Canadian naval programmes. They will also provide the necessary infrastructure for further growth of sonar exports to Ultra’s core five-eyes markets, leveraging Ultra’s already significant successes in providing sonar capabilities to major international navies.

As part of this investment, Ultra will also be upgrading areas of its facility involved in sonobuoy production – an activity which commenced in Nova Scotia in 1947. Ultra is Canada’s sovereign sonobuoy supplier, and also exports them to a number of allied nations, with demand and staffing levels expected to increase in this area.

Most importantly, Ultra’s investment in its Canadian sonar infrastructure will provide the modern, high-performing workplace that underpins the company’s dedication to Canadian high-tech job creation. In the two years since having been originally awarded programme definition studies for CSC, working in close partnership with Lockheed Martin Canada and Irving Shipbuilding Inc, Ultra’s Canadian team has grown by over 150 employees, with another 80 high-tech roles expected to be made available in 2021 alone. Ultra is immensely proud that new employees – often graduates of Canada’s universities and technical colleges – will enjoy high-value roles conducted in a world-class facility based in Atlantic Canada.

Jack Richardson