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28 March 2024 | 2 minutes read

28 March 2024 | 2 minutes read

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New collaboration to empower future innovators

“A new route for AWE in finding the best in UK innovation – to drive our world-class nuclear science and industrial know-how.”

David, AWE’s Head of Marketing Engagement

AWE is delighted to announce that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) as both organisations seek to drive innovation in UK defence and security. 

This collaboration will invite UK companies to offer novel solutions to AWE’s unique challenges. The move demonstrates AWE’s commitment to growing a resilient and diverse supply base to support its ambitious business transformation programme.

An AWE team recently visited the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) at Porton Down to meet with Head of DASA Anita Friend and her staff to inaugurate the MoU. David Richardson, AWE’s Head of Marketing Engagement, commented: “AWE’s last annual review stated that continuing to meet the requirements of the current warhead stockpile, while also delivering a replacement warhead, represents a significant challenge, but also an opportunity to transform the way that AWE operates and delivers world-class nuclear science and industrial know-how. The replacement warhead programme will be a national endeavour, building a wider, deeper supply chain and drawing on the very best of UK industry.  

“Collaboration with DASA will be critically important to this strategic objective. Together we aim to find and engage British companies with the potential to generate exploitable innovation and deliver a quick and effective impact on the AWE mission. AWE welcomes the opportunity to work with DASA’s twelve regionally-based innovation partners to secure this strategic advantage. We shall welcome ideas from innovators in companies small and large, including those who have not previously worked with Government.” 

“The Atomic Weapons Establishment’s work is crucial for the security of the UK.” – Anita Friend, Head of DASA

DASA’s role is to advise these innovators, helping to clarify the requirements and supporting suppliers on their journey to working with the Ministry of Defence. They are ideally placed to assist AWE in its critical mission in helping to keep the nation safe while using its unique skills and expertise to help nuclear threat reduction. 

Anita Friend, Head of DASA, said: “The Atomic Weapons Establishment’s (AWE) work is crucial for the security of the UK. DASA is thrilled to be collaborating with them to find and fund innovations to enable them to diversify their supply chain and maximise their impact. The signing of the memorandum with AWE also highlights DASA’s steadfast commitment to assisting industry and academia understand how they can best help tackle the UK’s major national security challenges and contribute to a secure, resilient, and prosperous nation. DASA strives to find and bring to market these innovative solutions, ensuring projects are delivered in a way that is relevant and at the desired speed, scope, and cost.”

Working with new partners who can bring fresh-thinking and ideas to the defence space will enable the unique people at AWE to continue to solve the most complex challenges as the organisation builds the highly-skilled teams, facilities and capabilities needed to deliver the UK’s replacement warhead programme. 

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