Naval Combat Systems Engineering Course

This popular five-day residential course is held at Portsdown Technology Park (near Portsmouth) in May and November. The learning outcome for the course is ‘To provide a high level view of Naval Combat Systems within the UK Ministry of Defence’.

"The NCSE Course is an excellent example of how, by joining forces across our enterprise, we can create valuable trading and education. I meet alumni of the course regularly, and have personally witnessed the powerful impact it has on the students."

- Vice Admiral Sir Simon Lister KCB, OBE.

Who should attend?

The course is aimed at those who already have or are about to join the Naval Combat System domain. Those re-entering Naval Combat Systems will also find this course valuable as it will bring their knowledge up to date.

No prior knowledge of Naval Combat Systems is required to attend.

When is the next course and how do I apply?

The dates of the next courses are:

  • 11 - 15 November, 2024
  • 12 - 16 May 2025

To apply for a place or if you have any questions regarding the course, please e-mail

Course content

The course provides an understanding of both the theory and practice of Naval Combat System Engineering. What does a Combat System consist of? Does the human (operator) affect the Combat System?

The course also considers design constraints such as Warship Vulnerability Reduction, Safety, Electromagnetic Environmental Effects and Human Factors. It also embraces the acquisition cycle and the importance of system-wide issues.

There is a visit to HMS Collingwood to appreciate how Combat Systems are taught to the Royal Navy. There are also tours of the Shore Integration Facility (T23 Frigate) and Maritime Integration Support Centre (T45 Destroyer) at Portsdown Technology Park.

The course is delivered by industry personnel, serving Royal Naval Officers and Ministry of Defence (MOD) Civil Servants, all recognised experts within their own field.

There are numerous networking opportunities for delegates during the course including two evening activities one of which is a formal naval wardroom dinner.

  • Click here to view the generic programme (subject to change) for the week
  • Click here for a short description of each topic covered on this course

Feedback from recent courses

“The variety of topics covered was excellent, it enabled us to view combat systems engineering from all sides.” - MOD delegate

“I found the most valuable elements were those that covered aspects of why integration and testing is important. The social element also played a key role in getting the networking going.” - Industry delegate

“I found the breadth and depth of the course well balanced as was the format of the course overall and each day well done thank you very much.” - MOD delegate

“The order and delivery of the course was well crafted, merging between high-level topics and detailed technical content to satisfy all delegates. There was the perfect amount of overlap between lecture content, making a smooth transition between topics without repetition. It was clear that the speakers were aware of the content of other lectures and made frequent reference to them. The end result was that some 26 lectures felt joined up and coherent - not an easy feat!” - Industry delegate.

The Combat System Enterprise

This course is part of the Combat System Enterprise formed between QinetiQ, the MOD and other partners in industry. As the providers of this course, we are grateful for the continued support from the following organisations:

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