RAN Discussions on SSNs only

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alexsa

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
Fine I'll go scrub the aft shitters then. Just trying to reduce the fantasy fetishism going on :p
And a lot of us really appreciate that. It really is spit balling at the moment. Lots of things do not add up to a Virginia being picked not least of which is ..... just what role does the UK have? A lot of what is coming out of the ministers office is ..... we are looking at lots of things (including leasing) but this does not mean that we are going to lease.

A few things we do know:
  • The sonar suite and combat suite for the Collins LOTE is pretty close to what was planned for French option and is 'apparently' for the SSN. So, yes, we can assume Mk48, SSMs from the US ... and all the other weapons that were to be deployed by the French option. This is because the Collins are equipped with the AN/BYG-1 and the integration of the new sonar suite will be part of the LOTE. So de-risking of that element will be addressed by Collins LOTE.
  • The boats will be built in Adelaide .... that has been a consistent message. This does not mean that modules will not come in form other countries .... in fact I think they will. Lets face it Collins had the bow module supplied by the designer (not that it was entirely brilliant).
The other issue that government will be mindful of (well ..... I really hope they are) is the reaction of states such as Indonesia and Malaysia and others.. This has not been unalloyed support. The Virginia is a significant beast and it is a capability that most could not defend themselves against. While there is concern over China .... having Australia behind you with a weapon you cannot match will change planning and contingency.

So our selection needs to be mindful of what we are doing. We can match China with an Astute or its replacement and this could be sold as a defence against their Virginia like capability. It is just my view but going for the Virginia could be destabilising.

I think we all need to calm down a bit and wait for something of more substance. Defence material has so far shown images of the Astute, the Dreadnought and the Virginia.... as well as a bunch of pictures of the Collins. The fact that the RAN is headed down this path is unprecedented and has significant implications. This will not be a simple process.
 

Reptilia

New Member
if we go with the uk…
is it a possibility that they may build and complete the entire hull section surrounding the reactor With all the trimmings and Osborne build the other 10 or so sections?
 

John Newman

The Bunker Group
if we go with the uk…
is it a possibility that they may build and complete the entire hull section surrounding the reactor With all the trimmings and Osborne build the other 10 or so sections?
I’d imagine regardless of UK or US design, that the fuelled reactor would arrive fully fitted into a complete hull section, that would appear to be the sensible way to go.

Can’t image the reactor arriving bubble wrapped and strapped to a pallet and then have to have the other infrastructure built around it.
 

Sideline

Member
I admit I no NOTHING about Sub's is there any full size training mock-up/simulators anywhere?
Would it be an idea to get crews up to speed?
 

StobieWan

Super Moderator
Staff member
Well, the could offer us a couple of QE class ships. I know very unlikely but so was Nuke subs for Aust.
The submarine buy is budgeted for however. Its some money that was going to be spent on a diesel boat that is now going to be allocated to a nuclear program.

There's nothing planned or budgeted for any new naval aviation capability.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
That image is actually a BAE rendering of the future RN Dreadnought Class SSBN, don't think we are getting SSBN's, As usual they put up a lot of different artwork and renderings when new kit is announced, not unusual. Not that far back to think of and remember many different conceptual drawings that were put up for the Attack class. Could be merit in it being a BAE drawing though ? never know :)


Cheers
Yes, Dreadnaught, you beat me on the rely.:)
 

Stampede

Well-Known Member
And a lot of us really appreciate that. It really is spit balling at the moment. Lots of things do not add up to a Virginia being picked not least of which is ..... just what role does the UK have? A lot of what is coming out of the ministers office is ..... we are looking at lots of things (including leasing) but this does not mean that we are going to lease.

A few things we do know:
  • The sonar suite and combat suite for the Collins LOTE is pretty close to what was planned for French option and is 'apparently' for the SSN. So, yes, we can assume Mk48, SSMs from the US ... and all the other weapons that were to be deployed by the French option. This is because the Collins are equipped with the AN/BYG-1 and the integration of the new sonar suite will be part of the LOTE. So de-risking of that element will be addressed by Collins LOTE.
  • The boats will be built in Adelaide .... that has been a consistent message. This does not mean that modules will not come in form other countries .... in fact I think they will. Lets face it Collins had the bow module supplied by the designer (not that it was entirely brilliant).
The other issue that government will be mindful of (well ..... I really hope they are) is the reaction of states such as Indonesia and Malaysia and others.. This has not been unalloyed support. The Virginia is a significant beast and it is a capability that most could not defend themselves against. While there is concern over China .... having Australia behind you with a weapon you cannot match will change planning and contingency.

So our selection needs to be mindful of what we are doing. We can match China with an Astute or its replacement and this could be sold as a defence against their Virginia like capability. It is just my view but going for the Virginia could be destabilising.

I think we all need to calm down a bit and wait for something of more substance. Defence material has so far shown images of the Astute, the Dreadnought and the Virginia.... as well as a bunch of pictures of the Collins. The fact that the RAN is headed down this path is unprecedented and has significant implications. This will not be a simple process.
Yes there is a lot we don't know in the public forum re the submarine decision.
No doubt there will be some enlightenment in the next eighteen months and suggest your correct in that many of the US systems we have now and projected for in the former " La Attack Class "will also be in the new" AUKUS Attack Class" down the track!

While currently on a need to know basis, I'd be flabbergasted if having made the call to jump ship, defence and government at the time of announcement ,didn't know exactly the details of what Submarine / systems / time table and broad direction of this major project we were acquiring.

For good or bad the wheels are in motion so lets wait for some more clarity and in the mean time be courteous to the neighborhood.


Regards S
 

SD67

Member
if we go with the uk…
is it a possibility that they may build and complete the entire hull section surrounding the reactor With all the trimmings and Osborne build the other 10 or so sections?
It’s what they effectively do right now with themselves. The reactor assembly is virtually a separate business, I think the MOD still have a shareholding
 

JohnJT

Member
Here are a couple of videos about the Virginia and Astute classes. Just something to pass the time while we wait for more info from the government. :)


 
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Git_Kraken

Active Member
Question for the Aussies here. Internal politics wise the Greens (outsider looking in) have a significant minority of the vote in Australia. I expect they will be making a big stink about this switch into nuclear. Also are there expected protests and other such anti-nuke sort of demonstrations? You would think going nuclear is going to create some significant blowback for the ruling party.
 

DDG38

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
Question for the Aussies here. Internal politics wise the Greens (outsider looking in) have a significant minority of the vote in Australia. I expect they will be making a big stink about this switch into nuclear. Also are there expected protests and other such anti-nuke sort of demonstrations? You would think going nuclear is going to create some significant blowback for the ruling party.
Nothing yet, because outside of the PR announcement there's not detail to the plan thus nothing to really protest against. Wait until boats are in the water, personnel are trained and local residents start to realise that there will be a few mini reactors berthed in their harbour. Then we'll see what sort of push back there might be. Everyone at the moment is too busy speculating to seriously start thinking of what the reality will be.
 
Question for the Aussies here. Internal politics wise the Greens (outsider looking in) have a significant minority of the vote in Australia. I expect they will be making a big stink about this switch into nuclear. Also are there expected protests and other such anti-nuke sort of demonstrations? You would think going nuclear is going to create some significant blowback for the ruling party.
Thats why the govt is being very careful to refer to nuclear POWERED submarines and to make clear that we are not talking about nuclear ARMED submarines
Defence matters are largely bipartisan between the 2 major parties. The Greens may make some noise and I daresay that the PM will not win any seats on the NSW North Coast, but they have no real ability to change anything. The Greens talk and complain in the full and comforting knowledge that they will never have to run the country or make a life and death decision
 

Joe Black

Active Member
I wonder if it is feasible to see if the USN would loan 2x Los Angeles or 2x Blk4 (or earlier) Virginias till mid 2030 whilst Australia and the UK work on a common SSNR platform and perform concurrent builds both in the UK and Osborne, SA. That would make a lot of sense in my mind.

Again, lets see what would come out of these 18 months discussions and negotiation.
 

John Newman

The Bunker Group
Thats why the govt is being very careful to refer to nuclear POWERED submarines and to make clear that we are not talking about nuclear ARMED submarines
Defence matters are largely bipartisan between the 2 major parties. The Greens may make some noise and I daresay that the PM will not win any seats on the NSW North Coast, but they have no real ability to change anything. The Greens talk and complain in the full and comforting knowledge that they will never have to run the country or make a life and death decision
Yes it’s clear the LNP Government is never likely to win votes/seats from the Greens, but equally the LNP will never likely loose votes/seat to the Greens either, no win, no loss.

On the other side of the coin is the ALP Opposition, they are the party at more risk, it’s more likely that they could loose more of their Left voters to the Greens.
 

Git_Kraken

Active Member
Say what? I thought that weight down low was part of the counter to weight up high.

oldsig

(Clearly I'm the wrong sort of engineer)
I see the confusion. I wasn't clear by "weight down low". I should have been more technical. Mea Culpa.

Apologies for what follows. I'm over-explaining for those here who might not understand the physics of ship stability as the board is a mix of technical and non-technical experts.

It depends on where the center of gravity is and where the waterline is. To properly counterbalance you need to create that righting arm equation which includes all the counterbalances and buoyancy. A weight near the CoG of the ship (VLS for example) either does nothing or exacerbates the problem as the ship heels and VLS ends up creating a moment. Actually, I wouldn't be surprised if more VLS raised the ships CoG higher.

To properly deal with a heavy radar you need a heavier weight as far below the waterline as you can, which often ends up being ballast in a ship that is "modified" as Hunter Class will be. Ballast is wasted design margin. It adds nothing to fight the ship. I've seen 6 to1 and greater ballast to equipment ratios for weight caused by new installs on masts. The ratios get large because of buoyancy and distance.

I'm a combat systems guy, but have been through enough refits and projects to know generally how combat systems impact the Nav Archs. I would be shocked if the T26 wasn't optimized based on the equipment as BAE knows what they are doing. This means modifications for Hunter have certain limitations/restrictions. And likely is one of the reasons they are up against the design margins as reported above.

I'm not saying more VLS isn't possible, what I am saying is that it will be hard to do without tradeoffs somewhere else (perhaps the removal of the FC illuminator as the SM family and ESSM family are going to be active missiles in the near future).

I very much doubt that assumption.

If Hunter, with a light ship weight of 8,200 tonnes and a full load displacement of or exceeding 10,000 tonnes (per senate estimates) doesn’t have any margin for more than 32 cells something is seriously wrong with the design.
I can only go from the article I posted. A margin of 270 tonnes is very tight. The addition of 8 more VLS with missiles inside them could gobble up all that margin.
 
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