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Shark Marine works closely with Canada

This St Catherines-based Underwater Technology Company
Boasts Military and Law Enforcement Customers around the World

When Jim Garrington, CEO and Chief Technology Officer at Shark Marine Technologies, started his company in the garage of his home back in 1984 he had no idea that his company would end up supplying critical underwater capabilities to military and law enforcement customers around the world.

Today, over 33 years later, Shark Marine supplies more than 20 navies, including the Royal Canadian Navy, and as Garrington told CDR, “We work closely with the customer to make sure we understand their needs.” Garrington’s company supplies equipment like underwater camera systems, ROVs and magnetometer systems.

These days, Garrington says, integration work is in big demand and his company is well positioned to offer that service with its own in-house machine shop and it even designs and builds its own circuit boards. What this all means is that when a customer like the RCN or JTF 2 comes to Shark Marine Technologies with a problem, the company can not only provide the technical solution but it can also provide long term technical support.

Garrington said, “The reason we keep it all in-house is for quality control and we take everything from the absolute ground up, also we are ISO certified (which ensures that they meet the needs of its customers and other stakeholders).”

In Canada, Garrington says they are working a lot with the Navy’s clearance divers in the area of mine counter measures and he explained, “Our diver held navigation and sonar imaging system is something that gives a diver the ability to see in zero visibility.”


Shark Marine’s Navigator is a Diver Held Sonar Imaging and Navigation System that Garrington says is the company’s hottest product, “We came up with the concept and perfected it and got it out to some 20 different navies around the world now including the US Navy Seals.”

The modularity of the Navigator system and numerous advanced sensors available allow the Navigator be to become a force multiplier, enabling smaller groups to cover more ground in less time.

Shark Marine’s Navigator is the most modular system of its kind, enabling it to be quickly configured for any application and the modularity of the system also means that it will never become obsolete, as technology advances in certain areas these components can be replaced, rather than having to have the entire system replaced. Shark Marine’s DiveLog software controls all operations of the navigator and its accessories, so operators need only learn one software to master all their equipment.

Training on its products and systems is a big part of what Shark Marine does and around the time that CDR first visited the company, the Hellenic Navy was there to be trained on some key systems.

The Hellenic Navy is among a large group of Navies world-wide that have attended training sessions at Shark Marine. The company provides training on all of its product lines from Survey systems, ROV’s, to the Navigator Diver Handheld Navigation System and as technology progresses the company believes it is paramount that they “. . . continue to keep our clients up to date on our technologies and maintenance, ensuring they are getting 100% functionality out of their equipment.”

While Shark Marine operates in the scientific and commercial sectors, over 70% of its business is in military and law enforcement and this year Shark Marine was ranked one of Canada’s Top 75 Defence Companies in CDR’s annual survey and ranking, so it’s definitely a company on the move in the defence sector.

The company was the first to put a portable camera on a diver’s helmet, then it was the first to make a Remote Vehicle that was modular and easy to adapt in the field to changing requirements.

But, one of the keys to the company’s success has been its ability and willingness to, as it says, “. . . play well with others.” And, proof of that is the respect it gets from its peers who are often eager to work with Shark Marine’s engineers, to integrate sonars and other systems that can be used with Shark Marine’s products. And, this is all testimony to the increasing importance of the company’s integration work currently.

What was very apparent to CDR as we talked to the Shark Marine folks was that this is an SME (Small/Medium size Enterprise) that has stayed very much in touch with its customer base and stands behind its products 100%. As a matter of fact, company CEO, Jim Garrington told us, if a navy customer has a question about any of the company’s products, they can call him any time night or day. “They have my cell #“, Garrington said.

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