Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 21 Issue 02

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Volume 21, No. 2
Pages 34 - 37

Project 20 Low-Frequency Active Sonar: The Successful Union of Oceanographic and Systems R&D Disciplines at the NATO Undersea Research Centre and Elsewhere

Ron Tompkins | NATO Undersea Research Centre, La Spezia, Italy
Stéphane Jespers | Delegation Generale pour l’Armement, Bagneux, France

First Paragraph

This paper documents and illustrates how the original SACLANTCEN/NURC (Supreme Allied Command Atlantic Undersea Research Centre/NATO Undersea Research Centre) project initially known as the Active Adjunct Project, or Project 20, naturally led not only to increased cooperation and interaction among individuals, programs, and the systems and oceanographic research divisions and support groups within the Centre itself, but also, in a broader way, served as a catalyst for improved and increased international cooperation and collaboration. Over the past 50 years, these interactions contributed to new understandings and breakthroughs in ocean research. Evidence of the continuing success and emphasis can be seen in the name change from the original NATO SACLANT Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Research Centre to NATO SACLANT Undersea Research Centre and, eventually, to the present and geographically broader NATO Undersea Research Centre (NURC).


Tompkins, R., and S. Jespers. 2008. Project 20 low-frequency active sonar: The successful union of oceanographic and systems R&D disciplines at the NATO Undersea Research Centre and elsewhere. Oceanography 21(2):34–37, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2008.50.