Babcock’s Team 31 has successfully completed its Whole Ship Critical Design Review (WSCDR), a key indicator of the compliance, maturity and engineering risk in proceeding into production as the 3D CAD model is maturing. The WSCDR was held virtually over a period of ten days and comprised of a large number of specific reviews to assess the maturity of the individual systems and equipment for the Type 31 Frigate.
An independent board of twelve experts reviewed the design, interrogated the engineering team and provided valuable advice to Babcock (the Design Authority), with attendees and contributors from the UK MoD. The board was pleased with the rate of progress made since the Preliminary Design Review in June 2020 and the level of technical maturity of the design, especially given the extraordinary circumstances of COVID-19.
Importance of WSCDR
Completing the Whole Ship CDR provides Team 31 with the confidence to fully develop the 3D CAD model and move towards the generation of build drawings in readiness for first steel cut and ship assembly later this year. Production work at Rosyth has been underway since last year on construction of ship cradles, build stools and ground supports. These form part of the essential infrastructure required to enable construction, and are designed to support the vessels upright as they are being built.
The WSCDR is a significant milestone in the Type 31 programme and reflects the progress being made since contract award. The facilities and technology investment in Rosyth has got underway, with manufacturing bay refurbishments, the installation of state of the art advanced manufacturing equipment. The New Assembly Hall will be completed towards the end of this summer before the start of ship assembly.
Team 31 has placed a large number of Supply Chain contracts to date representing nearly 80 per cent of the value. The remaining supply chain contracts will be placed in line with the procurement plan, with the first major equipment deliveries due later this year. Team 31 is currently operating across the UK in Rosyth, Bristol, Devonport and Crawley, growing and mobilising in readiness for ship assembly starting later this year. At the peak, approximately 1250 people will work on the programme across the UK.