Dolphins in Trouble

by Stuart Slade, Senior Naval Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Dolphin-Class Submarine. Source: IDF Navy

With the original group of Dolphin-class submarines designed to have a hull life of 30 years and a design initiation-to-commissioning cycle of at least 10-15 years, attention turned to designing replacements for the first three submarines in 2015.  At first, Israeli ambitions seemed somewhat excessive, with references to “an entirely different submarine from the Dolphin or the Dolphin AIP.” Reality appears to have set in, however, with attention now focused on an upgraded version of the Flight II Dolphin class that includes “some room for growth, with new materials, better sonar … but pretty much the same design.” Continue reading

India Launches Second Scorpene Submarine, but Capacity Pressures Still Haunt Navy

by Dan Darling, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Scorpene class submarine

With India’s submarine capacity dwindling, small rays of sunshine are beginning to appear in the distance. The launching on January 12 of the second in a six-boat class of French-designed Project 75 Scorpene attack submarines (SSKs) marks another small, slow step in building up a capable submarine arm that has dangerously atrophied over the years. During the 1980s, the Indian Navy submarine inventory numbered 21 vessels, while today it features just 13 conventional submarines, plus one indigenous nuclear-powered ballistic missile (SSBN) submarine, the Arihant. Another boat, the Russian Akula-class Chakra, is leased and used only for training purposes. Continue reading

Australia Opts for French Design in Future Submarine Competition

by Dan Darling, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Shortfin Barracuda. Source: DCNS

Shortfin Barracuda. Source: DCNS

In a highly anticipated decision, Australia’s center-right government opted for a French design to meet its Sea 1000 Future Submarine requirement. The project involves the construction of 12 submarines that will serve as a successor class to the Royal Australian Navy’s current Collins class fleet.  French shipbuilder DCNS offered up a diesel-electric variant – the Shortfin Barracuda Block 1A – of its nuclear-powered Barracuda attack submarine built for the French Navy. Continue reading

Australians Go French for New Submarine

by Stuart Slade, Senior Naval Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Shortfin Barracuda. Source: DCNS

Shortfin Barracuda. Source: DCNS

The French DCNS Group has beaten competitors from Germany and Japan to secure the contract to build Australia’s next fleet of submarines.  DCNS offered the Shortfin Barracuda, which is a modified version of the French Navy’s nuclear submarine.  The much anticipated $38.5 billion contract ensures that the 12 new submarines will be built at Adelaide’s Osborne shipyards.

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Fifth and Sixth Improved Kilo Class Submarines to Enter Russian Service

By Derek Bisaccio, Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Improved Kilo. Source: Russian MoD

Improved Kilo. Source: Russian MoD

By the end of May of this year, two more Project 636.3 submarines are due to be in service with the Russian Navy. On March 2, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced that the fifth diesel-electric submarine, called Veliky Novgorod, will be launched on March 18. The submarine will be floated out in Saint Petersburg on the 110th anniversary of the Russian Navy’s underwater forces.[i] Continue reading

Confronted by Submarine Deficiencies, Indian Navy Readies Plan for Additional Scorpene Purchase

by Dan Darling, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Scorpene class submarine

Scorpene class submarine

Faced with a declining submarine inventory, the Indian Navy is hoping to augment its current Project 75 order for six French-designed Scorpene diesel-electric attack submarines. The subs are being built by Mumbai-based Mazagon Docks under license, and with technology transfer provided by DCNS. The Navy is seeking three additional Scorpene subs, and a tender for the requirement is expected to be issued in 2016. Continue reading

Hoping to Build Up Private Shipbuilding Sector, India Moves Forward on Project 75I Submarine Program

by Dan Darling, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Project-75-I-Submarines-300x230

Project 75-I Submarine

The Indian government is exploring its options as it seeks to move forward on the Indian Navy’s Project 75I program involving a new six-ship class of nuclear-powered attack submarines (SSNs).

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Indonesia’s Planned Submarine Buy from Russia Raises Questions

by Dan Darling, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Type 209 Submarine

Type 209 submarine currently in service.

The Indonesian Navy has announced plans to procure two new submarines from Russia as it seeks to bolster its limited submarine force. Under a plan developed in 2002-2003, the Navy intends to acquire 12 diesel-electric submarines by 2024; currently it has just two German-built Type 209 (Cakra class) boats in its fleet, both of which are slated for decommissioning around 2020. Continue reading

Sonar 2076 Poised Only to Equip Royal Navy’s Astute-Class Submarines

By Richard Sterk, Forecast International.

The flank array of the Thales S2076 system on the HMS Astute

The flank array of the Thales S2076 system on the HMS Astute

The immediate future of Thales Underwater Systems’ Sonar 2076 appears solely linked the U.K. Royal Navy’s Astute-class submarine. The Sonar 2076, or Type 2076, is a fully integrated passive/active search-and-attack sonar suite installed on the Astute class and as part of the midlife update of Trafalgar class submarines. A total of four Sonar 2076 systems have reportedly been produced for Trafalgar class submarines, and seven have been ordered for the first batch of Astute class submarines.

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