Innovation Unit brings 3D creativity to repairs in HMAS Parramatta

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Rilana Ostheim (author), LSIS Ronnie Baltoft (photographer)

Topic(s): HMAS Parramatta (F154), Science, Technology & Innovation

Royal Australian Navy sailor Petty Officer Electronics Technician Nathan Little with a sound powered communications adaptor that was 3D printed on board HMAS Parramatta. (photo: LSIS Ronnie Baltoft)
Royal Australian Navy sailor Petty Officer Electronics Technician Nathan Little with a sound powered communications adaptor that was 3D printed on board HMAS Parramatta.

Overcoming obstacles while at sea is all in a day’s work for an innovative group of sailors in HMAS Parramatta, who are putting their problem-solving skills and innovative approach at the forefront of their daily work.

HMAS Parramatta’s embarked Innovation Unit demonstrated its capability during the ship’s recent East Asia Deployment, using 3D printing to replicate necessary items and developing new skills.

Petty Officer Electronic Technician Nathan Little, the Unit Innovation Coordinator, said significant innovations have already improved capability on board.

“Our 3D printing workshop was very successful during our deployment, producing three practical and real world solutions and returning capability back to our command,” Petty Officer Little said.

“We worked closely with other areas of the ship to identify issues and find real world solutions.

“We were able to replicate faulty parts and return full functionality, which is a great success for the team,” he said.

Some innovations the Innovation Unit has come up with while at sea have the potential to become the new standards and to be used across platforms.

While the 3D printing workshop is a catalyst, the real innovators and problem solvers are the unit’s team members.

Leading Seaman Electronic Technician Duncan O’Brien has been awarded a Commanding Officer’s Commendation for his initiative in developing his skillset without prior experience.

“To have been recognised for my work is a great personal achievement,” Leading Seaman O’Brien said.

“What’s even better is that my new skills now directly benefit my ship and the whole team on board.

“I am looking forward to creating more positive impact and results,” he said.

Imagery is available on the Navy Image Gallery: http://images.navy.gov.au/S20193099.