It is the largest defence acquisition project in the history of the nation, but the $50 billion, or is it $80 billion, project to replace the ageing Collins Class submarines with 12 regionally-superior submarines is in deep water as growing concerns about cost, capability and delivery time frame begin to sow confusion.

When then prime minister Malcolm Turnbull announced the DCNS, now Naval Group, Shortfin Barracuda as the successful design for the hotly contested SEA 1000 Future Submarine program in April 2016, it seemed as if the disastrous procurement of the Collins Class would be put aside.

As the prime minister assured both defence and the Australian public: “The Competitive Evaluation Process (CEP) has provided the government with the detailed information required to select DCNS as the most suitable international partner to develop a regionally-superior future submarine to meet our unique national security requirements.”

The successful Shortfin Barracuda design is a conventionally powered variant of the nuclear powered Barracuda fast attack submarine currently under construction in France for the French Navy.

Lees verder op Defenceconnect.com.au