RELEASE: RBSL awards Quantic Thistle a £6m subcontract

- RBSL awards Quantic Thistle a £6m subcontract for Challenger 3 next-generation sensors.

RELEASE: RBSL awards Quantic Thistle a £6m subcontract

- RBSL awards Quantic Thistle a £6m subcontract for Challenger 3 next-generation sensors

EDINBURGH, United Kingdom, September 12, 2023/PRNewswire/ -- Quantic Thistle has been awarded a £6 million subcontract to supply encoders for the British Army's Challenger 3 battle tank.

The contract guarantees that the British Army's Challenger 3 will have reliable and highly accurate sensors that will ensure the effectiveness of the main weapons.

Under the contract, Quantic Thistle (formerly Thistle Design) will supply RBSL with a turret displacement unit, in support of the British Ministry of Defence's tank upgrade programme. The unit is part of the new turret and provides precise data about its position to the vehicle's systems.

As a UK-based SME and manufacturer, this success reinforces the long-term security of the business, its employees and Quantic Thistle's role in the local and wider manufacturing community, which in turn supports the prosperity agenda from United Kingdom.

The work will be carried out at Thistle's manufacturing plant in Edinburgh, which is expanding its production capacity to respond to this and other major contracts, doubling its size in the next 18 months.

The contract will also support growth, including the recruitment of ten additional roles and apprentices, with further recruitment planned over the next three years.

The six-year contract was signed by RBSL and Quantic Thistle at RBSL's facilities in Hadley Castle, Telford, UK.

Colin McClean, CEO of RBSL, said:

"This contract is the latest in a series of contracts with British suppliers awarded by RBSL for Challenger 3, ensuring that the program benefits from the best of British engineering and manufacturing, while maintaining valuable competencies throughout the country".

“We are pleased to welcome Quantic Thistle to the team and look forward to working with them as the program progresses.”

Gordon Stewart, Managing Director of Quantic Thistle, commented:

"Quantic Thistle has a long and proud history of designing and manufacturing bespoke sensors for key UK platforms such as Scimitar, Warrior, Ajax and of course Challenger 2. We have recently established a strong relationship with RBSL and have been fortunate "We have been given the opportunity to participate in this critical defense project. This is a significant and vital upgrade to the Challenger 3 capability and fits perfectly with our business strategy to increase our support for the UK Ministry of Defence." "United Kingdom, which we have supported in land, sea and air applications for over 30 years. We are very pleased to strengthen our relationship with RBSL and to play a part in enhancing the UK's land capability."

"The award of this contract provides Quantic Thistle with the opportunity to expand our capabilities in the land domain and provides greater long-term security for the company and its staff. As a UK-based SME, participation in this project will reinforce our role in the social value agenda, with increased recruitment and the ability to support our local communities with careers, work experience and learning."

“We are incredibly proud of our team at Quantic Thistle for being awarded this contract which allows us to continue manufacturing mission-critical components on key UK defense platforms,” said Ross Sealfon, President and CEO of Quantic Electronics. "We look forward to supporting its continued growth in the years to come."

Owen Thompson, MP for Midlothian, said: "This is great news for Quantic Thistle and it is great news for Scotland. This vital defense contract will underpin Thistle's growth and provide both skilled employment and learning opportunities for its people in Midlothian. ".

About RBSL

Rheinmetall BAE systems land (RBSL) is a defense engineering company based in the United Kingdom. We design, manufacture and support military vehicles used by the British Army and international customers.

RBSL was launched in July 2019 as a new independent, UK-based joint venture between BAE Systems and German defense company, Rheinmetall.

RBSL has a proud heritage, having designed and delivered many of the Army's armored vehicle fleets under different trade names.

We have a skilled workforce of over 450 employees, including 250 engineers, across our sites in Telford, Dorset, Bristol and Newcastle, UK.

We also have a thriving early careers community made up of apprentices and graduates.

About Quantic Thistle

Quantic Thistle is a British SME that designs and manufactures the world's most accurate custom encoders for mission critical motion and control applications across land, sea, underwater and air, as well as critical industrial applications not only in the UK but also in Europe and around the world. For more than three decades, Thistle has supplied vital components for key UK platforms such as the Scimitar, Warrior, Challenger and Ajax vehicles, Type 45, Type 26 and QE Class vessels, Astute and Dreadnought submarines and Hawk aircraft. While the company continues to focus on the design, prototyping and manufacturing of next-generation encoders, it is also an expert in “build to print” and reverse engineering, enabling customers to maintain continuity of supply on critical legacy programs. . For more information, visit

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