Australia’s new fleet of submarines could be ‘obsolete’ when they come into service in 2030s

Australia has been warned its first French-designed Attack-class submarine is likely to be inferior to those operated by neighbouring countries, and may even prove “obsolete” before it’s due into service in the 2030s.

A new report by veteran military analyst Derek Woolner, and fellow researcher David Glynne Jones, is urging the Defence Department to urgently embrace cutting-edge lithium-ion battery propulsion for its future submarines.

Their report concludes that Australia’s objective for the $50 billion Attack-class program to produce a “regionally superior” submarine is “now under challenge”. 

“By the time HMAS Attack [the first of the new submarines] hits the water in the early 2030s, it’s going to be obsolete,” Mr Woolner has told the ABC. 

The former government advisor said HMAS Attack would be built with a heavy metal main battery, as part of a process already initiated under a contract signed by France’s Naval Group company and MTU Friedrichshafen for diesel generator sets.

Key points:

  • Australia’s objective to produce a “regionally superior” submarine is “now under challenge”
  • An analyst says other countries are building boats with lithium-ion battery propulsion, which allows higher speeds and longer time underwater
  • Defence Minister Linda Reynolds joins French President Emmanuel Macron for first official inspection of new Suffren-class subs

Lees hier verder bij ABC news