British Underwater Test and Evaluation Centre


Located in the Inner Sound to the east of the Isle of Skye, the British Underwater Test and Evaluation Centre (BUTEC) was designated in the 1970s as a range for testing torpedoes and other equipment such as SONAR. It is operated on behalf of the Royal Navy and the Ministry of Defence by QinetiQ, the defence contractor created through privatisation of parts of the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (DERA) in 2001. The Centre is headquartered at Kyle of Lochalsh (Highland) and the range is operated by installations on the island of Rona and near Applecross in Wester Ross.

Controversy struck in 2002 when a high-powered SONAR device was tested on the range, which was banned in the USA having been blamed for mass-deaths of whales and dolphins.

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