Ultra Speakers Bureau | all speakers

Dr Andrew Puryear

Other key appointments
Ultra Group Executive Team member

Dr Andrew Puryear is responsible for the Ultra group’s technology strategy and global research and development to innovate emergent, disruptive, and convergent technologies for a safer tomorrow. Dr Puryear has a background in electrical and computer engineering as well as extensive technology leadership experience in aerospace and defence.

Dr Puryear is the Chairman of the newly formed US Department of Commerce Emerging Technology Technical Advisory Committee (ETTAC), where he advises the department on emergent technology with potential dual-use applications in their developmental stages both within the United States and abroad. He has served in the US Navy Reserves since 2012 as a warfare qualified Engineering Duty Officer and a founding member of a specialized detachment within the Navy Cyber Warfare Group focused on rapidly surfacing new capabilities in cyberspace.

Prior to joining Ultra Electronics, Dr Puryear was the Director of Cyber Strategy and Execution at the MITRE Corporation. Dr Puryear graduated first in his class from MIT with a Ph.D. in electrical engineering with specialties in information theory, analytics, and cryptography. He holds an MS in electrical engineering from Stanford and a BS in electrical engineering, summa cum laude, from Texas A&M.

Areas of expertise:

Innovation management

Defence industry trends

Research and development

Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning

Wireless communications

Optical communications

Advanced RF


Chris Guo

Other key appointments
Ultra Fellow (2021)

Chris Guo is a renowned expert in the application of cryptographic algorithms for security functionality, with over 20 years’ experience in product security validation and verification. He leads the Ultra Cyber division’s product development, drawing on his deep understanding of threat analysis and modelling-driven security design to ensure they meet our customers’ rigorous cyber security and risk management requirements.

Areas of expertise:

  • Cybersecurity
  • Cryptography
  • Security validation and verification
  • Threat analysis

Dominique Dubouil

Other key appointments
Ultra Fellow (2021)

Dominique has spent 30 years developing complex RF components, with a specific focus on electromagnetic RF filters, and high efficiency HPA. His work enables state-of-the-art RF performance that sits at the core of high-end military communications systems. His expertise in high precision mechanical structures and software algorithms is a key driver of Ultra Communications' product development.

Areas of expertise:

  • Tactical communications
  • Electromagnetic RF
  • High precision mechanics
  • Algorithms

Howard Ebersman

Other key appointments
Ultra Fellow (2021)

Howard Ebersman is the Chief Scientist for the receiver division of our Sonobuoy Systems business unit, responsible for the development of aircraft-based and software-defined sonobuoy receivers. His work has included developments such as the enablement of High altitude ASW through the implementation RF interference mitigation. As a key contributor and subject matter expert to both the NATO SG90 and SG250 working groups, he plays a vital role in defining and driving the next generation of sonobuoy capabilities across the US and Europe.

Areas of expertise:

  • Anti-submarine warfare
  • Software-defined systems
  • Sonobuoys
  • Advanced radio frequency technologies

Jefferson Ridgway

Other key appointments
Ultra Fellow (2021)

Jefferson holds a PhD in Theoretical Particle Physics and is considered one of the UK’s leading experts in nuclear reactor neutron measurement and radiation protection, having provided numerous lectures and briefings to UK regulators on the subject. He was a key contributor to the development of an award-winning bespoke manufacturing and radiation test facility for neutron flux detectors, supporting the life extensions of UK AGR nuclear power stations.

Joanne Roberts

Other key appointments
Ultra Fellow (2021)

Joanne Roberts is an expert in automatic target recognition and was an early figure in the use of neural networks, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence techniques, having deployed one of the earliest examples of functional AI/ML on a production airborne platform. As Director of Capability Management for Ultra Sonar, she is responsible for the integration of intelligent processing across our sonar products.

Areas of expertise:

  • Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning
  • Target recognition
  • Intelligent processing

Olivier Belsin

Other key appointments
Ultra Fellow (2021)

Olivier is a renowned expert in acoustics, serving as an acoustic engineer in the French Navy before spending almost a decade working on mine hunting sonar, sonobuoy processors and satellite communications systems. He has also held the position of adjunct professor in the Mechanical Engineering department of Sherbrooke University. He is the holder of five patents and as Principal Designer at Sonar Systems he introduced the use of finite element modelling to Ultra.

Tim Rorick

Other key appointments
Ultra Fellow (2021)

Tim has nearly 35 years experience in the design, development, testing and manufacturing of active and passive ASW systems.   He has pushed the state of the art in transducer technology with innovative design solutions that address the ever-increasing threat from technologically advanced adversaries. His transducer designs support all active and passive sonobuoys currently in production at Ultra’s Columbia City facility.

Tony White

Other key appointments
Ultra Fellow (2021)

Tony is an Ultra veteran of nearly 21 years, during which time he has led the creation of platform solutions for a number of Land programmes and co-authored international standards for vehicle, soldier and base architectures. He is considered Ultra’s foremost land systems expert, and is a familiar face across the UK MoD, US DoD, Australian MoD, Nato and all of our prime partners. In 2014 he launched a small R&D project that went on to become UltraLYNX, our industry-leading solider-worn system integration solution.

Areas of expertise:

  • Edge wearable technology
  • Open architectures
  • Combat vehicles
  • Power management

Mohamad Zahzah

Mo Zahzah is a leading figure in the development of solutions for signature and power management. He has been a key investigator in the development of various technologies, products, and subsystems for the US navy, including Signature Management and Control Systems Design, Power Management, Hybrid Electric Drives (HED), Solid State Quiet Switches (SSQS) & Solid-State Voltage Frequency Converters for JSF Aircraft. He previously held the position of adjunct professor in the Electrical & Computer Science department at California Long Beach State University (CSULB). As Chief Technology Officer of our Signature Management & Power business unit in our Maritime division, Mo is responsible for long-term strategic planning, technology roadmap development, and IR&D formulation.

Areas of Expertise:

  • Control system design
  • Power management & distribution for maritime nuclear navy applications
  • Signature management for surface and subsurface applications
  • Power system(s) architecture
  • Open architecturs

Lori Thompson

Lori Thompson is a strategy, marketing, and business development leader with extensive experience in strategic planning, technology and offering development, and innovation management and investment across the aerospace, defence, and communications sectors.

As Senior Vice President for Strategy, Business Development and Marketing for our Intelligence & Communications division, Lori is responsible for strategic planning and execution priorities and leading the business development and marketing functions to grow new business opportunities with defense and security organizations worldwide.

She also currently serves as a Board Member for the University of Colorado Alumni Association Advisory Board.

Areas of expertise:

  • Strategy Development & Execution
  • Business Development
  • Market Intelligence
  • Tactical Communications
  • Command and Control Systems
  • Cryptography
  • Software development and business models
  • Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance
  • Innovation and R&D management

Dr. Samantha Davidson

After completing her Doctorate in magnetic sensing, Dr. Samantha Davidson was appointed Leader for Ranges Research at Ultra and led the development of the electromagnetic signature modeling development for the Transmag ranges in-service with the UK MoD.

She has 30 years of experience in signature management, including underwater measurements system design, commissioning, research, and underwater data analysis worldwide. Samantha is currently a Technology Manager for Signatures, Ranges, and Sensors in the Sensors and Ranges Team at Ultra Signature Management & Power with a brief to look at novel sensing techniques.

Areas of expertise

  • Underwater multi-influence sensing and detection: electric, magnetic, acoustic, seismic and pressure
  • Novel underwater sensing technologies

Jim Parberry

Dr Jim Parberry has been engaged with the analysis of ASW operations and associated systems for almost 30 years.  For 21 years, Dr Parberry worked in the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) and predecessor organisations.

The highlight of his government career was the Group Leadership of the UK Acoustic Replay & Analysis Capability, which included the coordination and technical management of a team of military and scientific staff engaged in the acoustic analysis of ASW operations.  The seven years Dr Parberry spent as head of the UK Acoustic Replay & Analysis Capability was the longest period of continuous leadership since its formation.

After Technical Assurance, Programme Management and concept development roles in DSTL, Dr Parberry moved to industry, joining Boeing Defence UK and now Ultra, to develop and progress the application of autonomous vehicles and develop system concepts in the ASW and maritime context. Dr Parberry was awarded Boeing Global Operations Engineer of the Year in 2020.

Areas of expertise

  • Anti-Submarine Warfare
  • The operational context of underwater acoustics
  • The application of Uncrewed and Autonomous Systems to ASW
  • Acoustic signatures
  • Sonar system performance
  • Conventional ASW platforms 

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