Research Activities

The Design Unit is one of the largest gear research groups in Europe, employing 24 engineers and technicians in gear research, development, design, trouble shooting and in-fleet support.

It is the principle gear research centre for the British Royal Navy, with special expertise in:

  • Gear design for ultra low noise (submarine gearing especially, where new design techniques have reduced already low noise levels by over 10 dB).
  • Gear stress analysis for high reliability gearing.
  • Novel gearbox design – modular, self aligning gearboxes for low weight, high performance craft.
  • Gearing for geared electric motor IFEP systems.
  • Gearing for geared motor pods and Z drive pods for fast craft.
  • Gear material fatigue, (bending and surface).
  • Gear manufacture heat treatment quality assurance and gear metrology.
  • In-fleet support – gear inspection, in-service failure investigations.

Other sectors of industry with which the Design Unit has extensive collaboration are:

  • Army - wheeled and tracked armed vehicle gearboxes and electro-mechanical drives.
  • Automotive - gearbox and axles and on–engine drives (chains and belts).
  • Rail-traction - gearboxes for EMU’s, DMU’s and locomotives.
  • Wind energy - speed up gearboxes for aero-generators.
  • Power generation - gearboxes for gas turbine and water turbine driven generators.