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Chemring Group - New EOD and IEDD specialist

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Chemring Group
: 23 January, 2008  (Company News)
Chemring Group’s acquisition of leading EOD and IEDD specialist, Richmond EEI strengthens the Group’s position as a key provider of global protection products. Richmond is a world leader in light-weight, long-range, recoilless disrupters – vital for safely neutralising unexploded ordnance and IEDs, whilst minimising the risk of collateral damage.

Chemring Group Business Development Director, Rik Armitage says, “Richmond is another step in the successful implementation of Chemring’s EOD strategy. We recognise that EOD and IED Defeat is a large and growing market, driven currently by the threat of international terrorism. Its future however, will extend to post-conflict clearance and reconstruction. Our ambition is to become a centre of excellence and understanding across the whole spectrum of energetics – and thus establish a position of world technology leadership in this field.”

Within the Chemring Group, Richmond EEI will work closely with BDL Systems and Chemring Defence, complementing the Group’s existing range of remote initiators and demolition stores. Richmond also brings an established presence in international markets It already supplies the UK , US and and the other core NATO markets. Two years ago it broke into the Australian and New Zealand markets and it sells throughout the Middle East and Asia.

Richmond was founded in 1988 and now employs nearly forty at its rural Norfolk facility. “Over time, we have evolved a range of products which cover all the key activities of EOD and IEDD operations from search and assessment through to neutralisation”, says Richmond Founder Managing Director, Robert Gilbert. “We work very closely both with end users and with prime contractors who supply EOD robots and other equipment. The threat continues to become increasingly sophisticated, which places a growing emphasis on detection technology and the ability to rapidly tailor new countermeasures to changing threats. Richmond designs, develops, prototypes, manufactures, and assembles most of its products in-house, which means we can respond to new threats or tactical changes and have the flexibility to fulfil UORs (Urgent Operational Requirements).”

Richmond’s Search products include non-linear junction detectors, selective metal detectors and electronic stethoscopes. Portable wireless X-ray and video inspection kits provide the operator real time visual information to conduct a detailed assess of a device from a safe distance.

Richmond’s core neutralisation products are its range of recoilless disrupters, which are stand mounted or carried by a remotely operated vehicle using Richmond’s proprietary weapon carriers. Its recoilless disruptors use a patented counter-piston design which fires a mass of water backwards at the same time as the main projectile or jet is fired. This means that disruptors can be fitted to even small robots, transforming their capability from reconnaissance to neutralisation.

Richmond also offers a wide range of ancillary and support equipment such as long arm remote manipulators, attenuators and suppression devices; freeze neutralising kits and personnel protective clothing. In addition it supplies specialised non-magnetic tools, cutting equipment – and even a Rocket propelled wrench for extracting fuzes from unexploded ordnance.

The combination of Richmond and BDL Systems within the Chemring Group is a powerful one – both offer technically leading products developed with the UK MoD and other forward looking bomb-disposal specialists, and both bring complementary long-standing customer relationships. The two businesses will remain separate entities, but will work closely together in sales, marketing and product development to ensure EOD technicians are properly equipped to deal with the ever changing threat. Richmond will become part of Chemring’s Energetics Division, where it will benefit from wider routes to market and technology base.

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