Babcock to upgrade Royal Navy’s “final four” Trafalgar class submarines

There are currently five Trafalgar-class submarines left in service with the Royal Navy: HMS Tireless (commissioned 1985, scheduled to decommission 2014), HMS Torbay (commissioned 1987), HMS Trenchant (commissioned 1989), HMS Talent (commissioned 1990) and HMS Triumph (commissioned 1991). Babcock will be conducting work on CCSM to reduce near-term obsolescence for the “final four” boats only.

Babcock to upgrade Royal Navy’s Trafalgar-class submarines’ CCSM system

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has awarded a contract to Babcock to design and develop the first phase of the communications coherency for submarines (CCSM) system’s obsolescence update in support of the UK Royal Navy’s Trafalgar-class nuclear-powered submarine.

Upgrades to the CCSM system will address near-term obsolescence issues while enhancing the system’s life over the operational service of the final four Trafalgar-class submarines.

The CCSM modernisation programme will be performed in two stages, with the first involving an update to the hardware and software handling the military signal messages, while the second phase will address the legacy communications equipment routing infrastructure.

Currently, Babcock is developing and seeking suitable hardware and software with the authority as part of the contract, while the design is expected to be finalised in September 2013.

Babcock integrated system and support group director, Charles John, said: “Babcock is responsible for CCSM in-service support and is pleased to provide a solution that overcomes the obsolescence issues while minimising the disruption to the office infrastructure due to the CCSM design.”

The CCSM system has been designed by Babcock to provide enhanced capability for submarines to manage existing and future levels of message traffic and information such as the efficient using and sharing of information, as part of joint or coalition task force.

Initially deployed on to the Trafalgar-class submarines in 2005, the system has integrated existing independent autonomous systems into a single commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) based system architecture.

The improved processes of the system also enable rapid technology integration for maximum efficiency and cost benefits.
Acceptance trials for the CCSM system update is expected to be carried out in the company’s purpose-built Communications Shore Integration Facility (CSIF) at Devonport, UK, in January 2014.

www.naval-technology.com/news/newsbabcock-upgrade-royal-navys-submarines-ccsm-system

PHOTEX: USS Albuquerque returns to San Diego

130821-N-NB544-130 SAN DIEGO (Aug. 21, 2013) The Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Albuquerque (SSN 706) returns to Naval Base Point Loma following a seven-month deployment to the western Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kyle Carlstrom/Released)

43 nations have over 600 submarines

At present, 43 nations have over 600 submarines

TNN | Aug 19, 2013, 06.03 AM IST

The INS Sindhurakshak tragedy has brought the focus on the mysterious world of submarines. Here are some interesting submarine facts.

When was submarine first used in war?

By early 18th century, many inventors made several designs of naval vessels that could travel on the surface as well as beneath water. The American Revolution was the first war that witnessed military deployment of such boats. Submarines were also used during the American civil war. Submarines equipped with torpedo became a major factor during the First and the Second World War. According to US navy at present there are 43 countries operating over 600 submarines.

How does a submarine submerge?

One of the most important features of a submarine’s design is the ballast tanks. These tanks could be alternatively filled with water or air depending on the requirement, whether the vessel wants to float on water’s surface or travel underwater. The tanks are filled with air when the submarine is at the surface. To submerge the air is released and the tanks are filled with sea water which makes the vessel heavier.

Submarines maintain a stock compressed air while travelling underwater. This air is used for life support and for filling the ballast tank.

How does a submarine propel?

Most of the today’s diesel submarines work like a hybrid vehicle. A typical diesel submarine has two diesel engines. One engine is used to propel the vehicle when it is on surface while the other is used to charge its batteries. These vehicles can only go underwater after fully charging their batteries. After going underwater they are propelled by battery-powered electric motors. Because of the battery powered propulsion the diesel submarine can stay underwater for a limited period.

A nuclear powered submarine is not based on combustion engine. Unlike diesel subs, a nuclear sub doesn’t need air to burn it fuel and hence it can remain underwater for a much longer period.

How is the underwater navigation done?

Typically, submarines don’t have windows and hence the crew could see outside underwater. When a submarine is near surface then it uses periscope to have the outside vision. Most of the submarine travel much deeper than the periscope depth and the navigation is done with the help of computers. Like any other conventional ship, a submarine navigator is also dependent on regular ocean navigation chart.

The submarine uses Sonar (Sound Navigation and Ranging) to detect target ships.

How is the submarine’s environment controlled to support life?

Modern submarines- nuclear as well as diesel are designed to stay underwater for a significantly longer period. To have a healthy environment for humans a submarine is required to maintain earth like air quality, supply fresh water and maintain suitable temperature. Most of the submarines are equipped with oxygen generator and water purifiers.

These equipments use sea water to generate oxygen as well as produce fresh water. Apart from this the carbon dioxide and moisture is periodically removed to keep the environment healthy.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/At-present-43-nations-have-over-600-submarines/articleshow/21907516.cms

The diminishing state of the French Navy seems all-too familiar

The French Navy’s politically-driven budget woes seem to be uncannily similar to those faced by the Royal Navy. The early decommissioning of the surface combatants and a reduced number of replacement vessels is the most obvious example. If we look at the future strength of the French Navy (Marine Nationale) as proposed in the 2013 Defence White Paper (livre blanc sur la défense et la sécurité nationale) the leaner forces will be expected to do as much, if not more.

Les forces navales reposeront sur la FOST avec ses 4 SNLE, des capacités de combat de premier plan pour les opérations de haute intensité et de gestion des crises majeures, avec un porte-avions, 6 SNA, 3 Bâtiments de projection et de commandement et 15 frégates de premier rang, comprenant les frégates de défense aérienne, les frégates multi-missions et des unités de combat moins puissantes, notamment les frégates de type Lafayette adaptées avec sonar. Elles seront complétées par des unités plus légères aptes au contrôle des espaces maritimes : 15 patrouilleurs, 6 frégates de surveillance, des bâtiments d’assistance. Elles comprendront également des avions de patrouille maritime ainsi qu’une capacité de guerre des mines apte à la protection de nos approches et à la projection en opérations extérieures.

Let’s translate that into English.

The naval forces will rely on the FOST (strategic oceanic force), with its four nuclear-powered, ballistic missile-carrying submarines (SSBN), high-level combat capabilities for high-intensity operations and major crisis management missions, with an aircraft carrier, six nuclear-powered attack submarines, three combined support and command vessels (BPC) and 15 frontline frigates, including air defence frigates, multi-mission frigates and less powerful combat units, notably Lafayette-type frigates with sonar capabilities. They will be supplemented by lighter units capable of controlling maritime spaces: 15 patrol boats, six surveillance frigates and support vessels. They will also include naval patrol aircraft and a mine-laying capability to protect our approaches and for deployment in external operations.

That politicians experience no cognitive dissonance is remarkable.

 

Keel laying for HMS Agamemnon, new Astute class submarine for Royal Navy

BAE Systems laid the keel on the newest HMS Agamemnon today, 18 July 2013, which will be the sixth Astute class submarine in Royal Navy service.

While we’re pondering this £800m piece of sheer bloody awesomeness, let’s have a look at the old 64-gun “Eggs and Bacon” that fought at Trafalgar. She was launched on 10th April 1781 at a cost of £38,303 15s 4d.

Launch of the ‘Agamemnon’, Buckler’s Hard, 1781 by Harold Wyllie

The Royal Navy RSPT (1987)