NEWPORT, R.I. — Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) Division Newport Commanding Officer, Captain Mike Coughlin signed a Partnership Intermediary Agreement between Division Newport and the Polaris Manufacturing Extension Partnership today launching the 401 Tech Bridge. The 401 Tech Bridge takes advantage of the very robust regional technological ecosystem here in Rhode Island.
“The Warfare Centers recognize that to be successful, whether it is on a submarine, on a ship or solving a technical challenge, you need a good team,” Coughlin said. “We realize that Expanding the Advantage means reaching out beyond our Navy partners, Warfare Centers and traditional defense contractors. We need our team to include small businesses and educational institutions that don’t traditionally work with the Navy.”
“We are better when we work together,” said Rear Adm. Eric Ver Hage, commander of the Naval Sea System Command Warfare Centers. “Those of us in Navy leadership want to leverage the considerable intellectual capital, entrepreneurial spirit, and relationships that are already here in this region, and by collaborating better than we already are – improve our ability to serve our Sailors and Marines.”
Through Polaris MEP, NUWC Division Newport is now teaming with the University of Rhode Island, the Composites Alliance of Rhode Island and the Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network to reach out to businesses and educational institutions. This will allow them to conduct cooperative research and development to solve Navy problems with small business innovation and enable us to solve commercial problems with Warfare Center inventions.
The Tech Bridge construct will provide creative spaces for the Navy, industry, non-profits and academia to collaborate that are off-base and easily accessible. This may include innovation spaces at University of Rhode Island and the proposed Portsmouth facility this coming year. The partnership may also take advantage of collaboration facilities like those available at Innovate Newport where the signing took place today.
“Our new 401 Technology Bridge and this new Partnership Agreement between NUWC Newport and Polaris MEP under the auspices of the URI Research Foundation will connect us even more closely,” said Ver Hage.
Through collaboration in the 401 Tech Bridge and this new partnership, NUWC is ensuring the Division Newport vision of Undersea Superiority: Today and Tomorrow!
NUWC Newport is a shore command of the U.S. Navy within the Naval Sea Systems Command, which engineers, builds and supports America’s fleet of ships and combat systems. NUWC Newport provides research, development, test and evaluation, engineering and fleet support for submarines, autonomous underwater systems, undersea offensive and defensive weapons systems, and countermeasures associated with undersea warfare.
Currently celebrating its 150th anniversary, NUWC Newport is the oldest warfare center in the country, tracing its heritage to the Naval Torpedo Station established on Goat Island in Newport Harbor in 1869. Commanded by Captain Michael Coughlin, NUWC Newport maintains major detachments in West Palm Beach, Florida, and Andros Island in the Bahamas, as well as test facilities at Seneca Lake and Fisher's Island, New York, Leesburg, Florida, and Dodge Pond, Connecticut.