RSN capabilities

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
The Chang Bogo class are a variant of the Type 209 Sub, which has now been in production on and off since the very early 1970s, has to be some kind of record for a Warship design. Of course internally they would be a very different but the Baseline design is the same
1. While the Koreans have significantly evolved the design of the KSS-I Chang Bogo class to meet their own needs, the older designs only have a 2 MW propulsion motor; which in the past served as a limit the ability of the submarine to conduct sprints. There newer sub-systems that allow up to 4 MW.

2. The nine 1,860-ton KSS-II Son Won-il class submarine are each powered by a 4 MW Siemens Permasyn propulsion motor; and this tech was also applied to at least the Type 214 submarines of TKMS.
(a) South Korea launched its final KSS-II submarine, at Ulsan Shipyards on 7 Sep 2017. The nine KSS-II and four Greek Type 214 submarines, each have a length of 65 m, a beam of 6.3 m, and a draught of 6 m. It is interesting to note that the Portuguese navy’s Type 214 are larger with slightly different dimensions (with a length of 67.9 m, a beam of 6.3 m and a draught of 6.6 m).​
(b) South Korea's KSS-I, KSS-II and KSS-III building program suggest a goal of having a rolling average of 18 to 22 submarines to match Japan's medium term goal.​

3. TKMS has:
(a) completed 3 batch 2 Dolphin class submarines​
(b) built the first of 4 Invincible class submarines; and​
(c) orders for 6 new Type-212CD submarines,​

are each of which are to be powered by a propulsion motor (often with a rated power of 4 MW or more).

* The AIP equipped batch 2 Dolphins are larger than the batch 1, Type 212A German submarines. In October 2017, Israel and Germany confirmed that they have finalised a MOU for the purchase of three more Dolphin-class submarines to be delivered starting in 2027. These boats will replace the first three of the class which by then will be about 30 years old.
  • Displacement: 2,050 tons surfaced, 2,400 tons submerged
    • Length: 68.8m
    • Beam: 6.8 m (22 ft)
    • Draught: 6.2 m (20 ft)
    • 3 MTU V-16 396 SE 84 diesel engines with three Siemens 750 kW alternators, and a Siemens sustained-power motor of about 3 MW output power
    • Speed: 25 kts submerged
    • Complement: 35 + 15 passengers
    • Armament: Six 21" (533mm) torpedo tubes and four 26" (650mm) torpedo tubes.
4. Siemens started on the R&D of large-scale Siemens Permasyn propulsion motor in 6 MW class for the Australians; and they also plan to cover the product range of 1.5 MW to 8 MW, with the FLEX PM solution — a product range that is well suited to meeting the future requirements of the 3,000 ton KSS-III and Australia’s 4,500 ton Attack class submarines. The new Permasyn motors are planned in three baseline frame sizes, with the diameter determining three power ranges. The specific power rating within one range is then fine-tuned with the length of the stator and rotor. The ultimate size and weight are also driven by the associated inverters, which are integrated in the motor itself. According to Siemens, the specifications for this drive concept have been completed and initial development work has commenced. By way of comparison, Japanese submarines are each powered by a SMC-8 main motor with a maximum output is 5.9 MW, giving the Sōryū-class a superb ability to conduct sprints.
 
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OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
Singapore at RIMPAC

1. Hearing the Australian perspective on training together with RSS Supreme, on the multi-national sail to RIMPAC.

2. RSS Supreme, sails with other navies during RIMPAC. Grateful that Australia, Brunei, Canada and NZ each enjoy a strong bilateral defence relationship with Singapore and these countries together help maintain a shared vision of the significance of the international rules-based maritime order — in particular, Australia (Exercise Wallaby), Brunei (Exercise Lancer) and NZ (Exercise Thunder Warrior) who host Singapore troops for our unilateral exercises.
  • Brunei and Singapore have a 53 year old Currency Interchangeability Agreement which makes both Brunei dollar and Singapore dollar banknotes and coins legal tender in either country and also cooperate extensively in defence, finance, trade and investment, tourism, health, aquaculture, and education.
  • Australia, NZ and Singapore have long maintained a security relationship as part of their wider ties, which were elevated to the level of a comprehensive strategic partnership (with Australia) and a closer economic partnership (with NZ). Beyond the usual components of this aspect of relations such as exchanges and exercises, these 3 countries are longstanding members of the Five Power Defense Arrangements (FPDA) — the oldest standing multilateral security agreement of its kind in the region. Our troops have journeyed far together, as burden sharing partners in operations that span East Timor, CTF-151, Afghanistan and Iraqi.

3. Taking on the role of Sea Combat Commander (SCC) of Task Group 2.1, SLTC Choo Jui Yeang and his command team embarked on RSS Supreme directed eight other ships from seven nations, in one of two task forces, in anti-surface and anti-submarine drills. SLTC Choo Jui Yeang is a Swedish trained Singaporean submariner that assumed command of Task Group 2.1, and he has particular expertise on submarine tactics (as a former CO of a submarine, prior to his present SCC appointment). RSS Supreme also successfully fired an Aster missile against an incoming high-speed aerial target during RIMPAC 2020.
4. RSS Supreme’s Commanding Officer LTC Eileen Chua said: "The RSN's mission includes protecting Singapore's sea lines of communication and contributing to regional peace and security. Joining RIMPAC allows us to do just that: we are able to demonstrate strength and exercise our capabilities as a form of deterrence, as well as foster stronger ties with like-minded navies through cooperation at sea.”

5. “The tremendous capability of the Hawaii ranges enables RIMPAC navies to conduct live fire exercises in support of joint and combined multi-domain training,” said Adm. John C. Aquilino, commander of U.S. Pacific Fleet.
 
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OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
RSS Invincible on sea trials & the countdown to a sunset ceremony for RSS Conqueror & RSS Chieftain begins

1. By late 2023 Singapore will operate 2 types of AIP submarines; with 2 Swedish built Archer class (with a 75 kW AIP plug) and 2 German built Invincible class (each with 2 HDW/Siemens PEM fuel cells of 120 kW) submarines, giving them a submerged endurance of over 18 days. Together with German, Israeli and indigenously-developed systems integrated into the combat suite, the 2,200 ton Type 218SG will be able to conduct patrols lasting over 40 days and have enhanced situational awareness and accelerated decision-making support systems, allowing submariners to rapidly orientate themselves, decide on the best course of action, and act.

2. Once the first 2 Invincible class enters service, Singapore can retire the last 2 Challenger class boats, which had insufficient automation. RSS Conqueror (ex-HMS Sjölejonet), launched in 28 May 1999 and RSS Chieftain (ex-HMS Sjöhunden), launched in 22 May 2001 are in urgent need of replacement by the future RSS Invincible and RSS Impeccable by 2022. Keeping in mind that these 52 year old boats entered Swedish service as the Sjöormen Class in 1968.

3. From photos, the Type 218SG appears to have features evolved from several TKMS designs including Types 212A (batch 2), 214 and Israel's batch 2 Dolphins.

(a) The 70 m long Type 218SG is approximately 2,200 tons. For comparison the 68.8 m long batch 2 AIP equipped Dolphin class is a 2,400 ton boat. The AIP equipped batch 2 Dolphins are 12 m longer and are nearly 500 tons more in displacement than the German Type 212As. Due to differences in mission sets, Israel’s batch 2 boats have a larger crew than either the Type 212A or the Type 214.​

(b) For reference, a single-dive distance record for a Type 212A Batch 1 was U32's cross-atlantic trip at 5,185 km (or 2,800 nm), in 19.3 days, that involved combat maneuvers along the way (one successful interdiction and one 36-hour evasion). The dive was part of a 31,000 km (or 17,000nm), 6-month overseas deployment of the submarine and a German sub tender.​
(c) Some have speculated that the Type 218SG is a 214 design with a long, 5 meter plug, simply because they assume that the Type 218SG’s beam is 6.3 meters; which is the same as the 214's beam (but I note the Mindef fact sheet only lists the length and displacement) — I think that this description is overly simplistic, given the amount of Singapore specified changes.​

4. Like the German Batch 2, Type 212s, I suspect that there are:

(i) two search mast systems (one for attack and another as a search optronic mast for general area search);​
(ii) a GABLER hoistable mast;​
(iii) a SATCOM mast; and​
(iv) a radio/comms mast,​

on the 4 Invincible class boats. The “attack optronic mast,” is gyro-stabilised, contains an infrared camera, a high-definition TV camera, an infrared beeper (to communicate with special forces), and a back-up camera. The second, the “search optronic mast,” can scan the full horizon in a few seconds to create a band of panoramic images simultaneously in both visible and infrared modes. The GABLER mast enables the boat to communicate without raising its mast.
 
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Sandhi Yudha

Well-Known Member
Development and trails of a new submarine class will always be paired with problems and setbacks, but once the problems are solved, it will be by far the most advanced submarine class in the region.


""This is the first of three « Invincible-class » submarines under construction at Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems Shipyard (TKMS) in Kiel, Germany."
Does this mean that the fourth one will be build in Singapore, or that the fourth one is not yet under construction in Kiel?
 

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
Post 1 of 2:
Development and trails of a new submarine class will always be paired with problems and setbacks, but once the problems are solved, it will be by far the most advanced submarine class in the region.
1. Let me be humble about this — as a country that until now only operated four refurbished 2nd hand boats — 2 of which are obsolete. Bear with me while I explain why I don’t think the Invincible-class is the most advanced SSK in the Indo-Pacific region — which has about 120 SSKs, half of which are modern.

(a) The Type 218SG has eight torpedo tubes and is manned by a crew of 28 (which crew is too small for the CONOPS of the Australian, Indian, Korean or Japanese Navies).​
(b) While it is an advanced design in that the Singapore Navy has a big focus on automation, increased automation also carries with it the downside risk of task saturation and lesser crew available for damage control, if it happens.​
(c) Larger fleet submarines with 42 to 65 crew members operate differently from smaller submarines with 28 to 35 crew onboard. For example, larger crew means more sonar men on duty for each shift, to enable the tracking of multiple targets. Lean crew submarines will have to perform the same fleet assigned task differently or can’t do the same missions — simply due to a lack of crew.​

2. In 2020, I think the most advanced SSKs in the region are the last 2 Japanese 4,200 ton Sōryū-class submarines — each with a crew of 65. Given the Japanese continuous build strategy, they will always have the most advanced submarines, in a little while (even if someone dethrones them for a few years). Even the older 4,000 ton Oyashio-class have 70 crew berths, more batteries and greater room for growth than our Type 218SGs — in the unlikely event that the Japanese choose to refurbish the Oyashio-class.

3. But in 2020, the Type 218SG is the most advanced within ASEAN. The Singapore Navy needed to take some developmental risk, at this time, to adopt an all new, orphan class of boat to launch UUVs and embark naval special operations forces, that we hope will remain threat relevant in the late 2030s-to-early-2040s. The 2,200 ton Type 218SG is fitted with two PEM fuel cells and two MTU 12V4000U83 engines, which allows the Invincible-class to stay submerged for about 50% longer than the Archer-class submarines.
 
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OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
Post 2 of 2:
"This is the first of three « Invincible-class » submarines under construction at Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems Shipyard (TKMS) in Kiel, Germany."
Does this mean that the fourth one will be build in Singapore, or that the fourth one is not yet under construction in Kiel?
4. It’s a typo, the text of the article says 4. All 4 boats are being built in Germany. No plans for a local build but there is collaboration on the ISUS suite that is jointly being designed by Atlas Electronik and ST Electronics to enable lean manning.

5. Modern sonar systems on the Type 218SG offer a number of acoustic antennas and combined signal processing for broadband and narrowband detection and analysis of target noise:

(i) While broadband detection is used to obtain an overview of the targets, and narrowband processing for detection of target characteristic frequency lines, produced by vibrations of the propulsion systems on surface ships which are radiated into the water.​

(ii) Narrowband processing is therefore essential for target analysis and classification. Frequency line information can be used to separate targets closely spaced in bearing, e.g. during target crossing situations, which cannot be resolved by the broadband passive sonar information alone. Narrowband passive sonar aims at the detection of characteristic frequency lines emitted by a target vessel. There are two related but different origins for such frequency lines:​

(a) the propulsion systems on board a naval ship; and​
(b) the physical effect of cavitation.​

Depending on the origin, it has to be distinguished between tonals, i.e. discrete frequency lines transmitted directly in the water column, and indirect frequency lines. The latter can only be detected by the application of an algorithm which searches for characteristic modulations of the broadband noise emitted by the ship.​

(iii) In addition, target bearing histories containing frequency line information may be used in the Target Motion Analysis module to infer about target course, speed and range without an own-boat manoeuvre. Therefore, narrowband passive sonar tracking provides an additional valuable source of information and enhances the capabilities of a submarine sonar and combat system.​

(iv) Two modes of operation can be used to analyze sound, namely the LOFAR signal processing which is sensitive for direct frequency lines and the DEMON signal processing which has the capability to detect the indirect frequency lines. The acronym LOFAR stands for LOw Frequency Analysis and Recording, DEMON stands for Detection of Envelope MOdulation on Noise.​

6. The combat management system that processes all the above sonar data on the ISUS suite is jointly designed by Atlas Electronik and ST Electronics that is capable of launching the SeaSpider Anti-Torpedo-Torpedo (ATT). This ATT, when fully developed provides a hardkill defence system with the aim of destroying or disabling a torpedo by explosive force. Atlas Elektronik says that SeaSpider can be employed by submarines, either from hull-mounted launch tubes, such as those typically used to employ traditional acoustic decoys, or from its torpedo tubes.

7. With low self noise, the Type 218SG’s sense-making systems that include locally developed data analytics and decision support engines (related to LOFAR and DEMON signal processing) is amplified.
 
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Todjaeger

Potstirrer
I don't pretend to be an expert on RCN submarine operations, but it would seem logical to assume Singaporean submarines operate in a more complex environment than do ours. So, where your guys are used to operating in this zero IR environment, I would suggest that RCN subs do not face the same constraints, given the vastness of the waters in which they operate. Knowing this (and thanks for the education, btw), I certainly have a newfound respect for RSN submariners!
I would be less apt to describe the Singaporean submarine environment as "more complex" and more apt to just state that it is a different environment.

I say this because while the waters around Singapore are warmer, littoral, and amongst the most heavily trafficked, all of which makes it difficult for Singapore to have a sub depart unnoticed, those conditions also make it much more difficult to a "Red Force" sub to close and loiter/lurk in or near Singapore's waters.

OTOH with Canada, while it can be easier to arrange ingress/egress times and routes for RCN subs, the conditions which permit this also make it easier for non-Canadian subs to approach Canadian ports...
 

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
@Todjaeger,

I wanted to provide some details you may not be aware of. Your input is valued but I want to clarify some details relating to submarine operations around the relatively shallow waters around Singapore — so please bear with the additional info provided, for your consideration.
I would be less apt to describe the Singaporean submarine environment as "more complex" and more apt to just state that it is a different environment.
1. At the very least, you would have to say that operating a ship or a boat in the Singapore Straits would constitute as steaming in a complex environment. In August 2017, the USS John S McCain was overtaking the Liberian-flagged tanker Alnic MC while both vessels were transiting the westbound lane in the Middle Channel passage of the Singapore Strait Traffic Separation Scheme, when a collision occurred. See: NTSB Accident Report on Fatal 2017 USS John McCain Collision off Singapore - USNI News

2. There has been so many near misses for foreign submarines in Singapore / Indonesian waters that in 2017 Singapore Navy started to provide a dedicated portal for submarine safety information (SSIP) with real time information with real-time tracking of deep draft commercial vessels and hazards to prevent underwater accidents. These include seismic activities, and real-time movement of deep-sea oil rigs and very large crude carriers.
I say this because while the waters around Singapore are warmer, littoral, and amongst the most heavily trafficked, all of which makes it difficult for Singapore to have a sub depart unnoticed,
3. Agreed. It just takes skill and coordination or having a good deception plan for any submarine operator who calls on Changi. US Navy and Australian Navy submarines do regularly call on Singapore as a port, with the SSIP designed to reduce stress for sub drivers in Singapore / Indonesian waters. These waters are also full of contact noise — it is really not easy to safely sail given the presence of deep draft vessels.
those conditions also make it much more difficult to a "Red Force" sub to close and loiter/lurk in or near Singapore's waters.
4. That is not true, from our observation — numerous countries, both friendly and hostile, lurk in our waters as part of their mission. The Singapore Navy has multiple unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) in the water, during our naval exercises in the South China Sea and we know that often multiple foreign submarines are tracking our ships and each other during these times. It is just risky and that prompted the creation of SSIP. Colonel David Foo, Commanding Officer of the Submarine Squadron said, “The portal will help submarines navigate amid unmanned underwater vehicles and warship exercises out at sea.”

5. The free portal, touted as the world’s first, is housed at the RSN’s Information Fusion Centre at Changi Naval Base, and builds on the existing database at the centre. In June 2009, a Chinese submarine accidentally snagged an underwater sonar array being towed by USS John S. McCain. Not all sub drivers are equally competent and we really don’t want them to die trying to observe ship movements in our waters.

6. Singapore also provides a regional submarine rescue service to multiple navies — can’t be bothered to dig up the long list of agreements with foreign navies today. DSTA has an article on sub rescue, here and have since 2015, established Joint Standard Operating Procedures for sub rescue, with other navies, like the US Navy.

7. Given that there are over 200 submarines operating in the region, Singapore is doing all it can to avoid a repeat of the Kursk incident (that occurred in August 2000, where all 118 personnel on board were killed), in the South China Sea. We also grieve with KRI Cakra in relation to the unfortunate deaths of two sailors in an submarine egress exercise in 2012 (see: Indonesian Navy to probe death of two sailors in submarine exercise).
OTOH with Canada, while it can be easier to arrange ingress/egress times and routes for RCN subs, the conditions which permit this also make it easier for non-Canadian subs to approach Canadian ports...
8. True, from a certain point of view. Conversely, Singapore submarines just use the traffic noise to hide from "Red Force" sub and observe their activities.
 
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