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MILITARY TECHNOLOGY (MILTECH) is the world's leading international tri-service defence monthly magazine in the English language. MILITARY TECHNOLOGY is "Required Reading for Defence Professionals". Follow us on Twitter: MILTECH1

22 June 2016

MAST Europe 2016: Forging Bonds

This year's MAST Europe conference and exhibition opened today at RAI Amsterdam, the Netherlands, with Lt.Gen. R. Verkerk, Royal Netherlands Marine Corps and Commander Royal Netherlands Navy, stating that, "at MAST, it is the intention to bring partners and industry, but also future thinkers alike, together to forge bonds and learn from those with similar interests. And by doing so staying ahead of our mutual adversaries."

There is indeed much consensus over this, since, "the emerging shift of geopolitical configurations and trade fragmentation has resulted in a competition between nations at sea", according to a report, entitled "Global Marine Technology Trends 2030 (GMTT2030)," released by authors from Lloyd's Register, QinetiQ, and the University of Southampton. This development will, "pose threats to peace and stability (...)," Richard Sadler, Lloyd's Register Group's CEO, noted in his publication's foreword.

Lloyd's Register, teamed with QinetiQ and the University of Southampton, is showcasing their global maritime expertise at MAST'16, and noted that they examined more than 56 critical technologies that might possibly be developed and implemented around 2030 by the commercial shipping, naval, and ocean space sectors. Of these, according to the report provided to attendees of MAST'16 in Amsterdam, the authors identified 18 technologies that scored the highest in a "net assessment" combining technical feasibility on a commercial basis, potential marketability, and their transformational impact on the rspective sectors. These 18 technologies are: robotics; sensors; big data analytitcs; propulsion and powering; advanced materials; smart ship, autonomous systems; advanced manufacturing; sustainable energy generation; shipbuilding; carbon capture; storage; energy management; cyber and Electronic Warefare (EW); marine biotechnology; human-computer interaction; deep ocean mining; human augmentation; and communication.

Exhibiting companies are expected to deliver a fresh appeal to the naval and maritime community at MAST'16, explaining why completely new technological concepts are in strong need and how they will be used in the maritime security environment. Likely examples at MAST'16 are, among several others: BAE Systems (promoting the 40MK 4 naval gun for which Jan Soederstroem, Head of Technical Sales, Weapon Systems, named a new, however yet unnamed customer); Northrop Grumman (highlighting solutions for Cyber Defence, surface strike, C4ISR and logistical support); Meggitt Target Systems (showcasing its multi-role, threat-representative helicopter target system); micromag from Alcorcon (Madrid) in Spain (dealing with nanonaterials based on silica and yet unnamed metalliferous compontents for low-observable naval platforms, according to CEO Santiago Alvarez de Cienfuegos); UK-based CRFS (with Steve Blades, Vice President International Sales, informing on airborne, naval, man-portable, and ground-mobile, fixed spectrum monitoring and data analysis); and Rohde & Schwarz (speaking of its newly developed R&S NAVICS solution for enhanced, secure naval communications).

Stefan Nitschke