We were asked by Rolls Royce Marine to design and build an actuator to that would be suitable for their new class nuclear submarine project. The final product had to be a simple actuator with electronic control, designed to meet a very strict engineering specification in addition to the following requirements:
- Ability to hold high chemical content oil
- Sufficiently rigid structure to withstand intense shockwaves.
The main uncertainties within this project concerned the compatibility of the product with the controls specified by the client, the nature of the actuator itself and its ability to pass the stringent shock testing, in addition to the type of materials used and their suitability for the life of product.
To overcome these uncertainties, all materials produced for the project were tested numerous times and chemical analyses were carried out on vital pressure components. A prototype actuator was built and extensive testing carried out in order to monitor any material failures. Throughout these procedures various redesign work was carried out, prototypes developed and a number of modifications were made in order to ensure the best possible product was offered to the customer.
The final testing consisted of a simulation of the submarine’s electronic control, tested under all conditions. The reliability of the product was then demonstrated to the customer and the project has so far been very successful resulting in repeat order.