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29 janvier 2015 4 29 /01 /janvier /2015 13:35
Le sous-marin Hai Phong. Source VNA

Le sous-marin Hai Phong. Source VNA

 

29/01/2015 Vietnam +

 

Le sous-marin Hai Phong (classe Kilo) a jetté l'ancre mercredi dans le port de Cam Ranh, province de Khanh Hoa (Centre), après un mois et demi de traversée depuis le port russe de Saint-Pétersbourg.

 

Il s'agit du 3e des six sous-marins de classe Kilo commandés par le Vietnam à la Russie dans le cadre de son plan de modernisation de la Marine populaire du Vietnam.

 

Ce sous-marin a été transporté par le porteur de colis lourds Rolldock Sea.

 

D'une longueur de 73,8 mètres et d'une largeur de 9,9 mètres, le sous-marin HQ Hai Phong a un déplacement de 3.000 à 3.950 tonnes et une vitesse moyenne de 20 milles nautiques/heure. Il est capable d'opérer à une profondeur maximale de 300 mètres et bénéficie d'une autonomie de 6.000 à 7.500 milles nautiques et de 45 jours. Son équipage comprend 52 membres.

 

En 2014, la Russie a remis au Vietnam deux sous-marins identiques, le HQ-182 Hanoi et le HQ-183 Ho Chi Minh-Ville, à la charge de la brigade 189 de la Marine vietnamienne. -VNA

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29 janvier 2015 4 29 /01 /janvier /2015 08:55
Ile Longue photo Marine nationale CG Quillivic

Ile Longue photo Marine nationale CG Quillivic

 

29.01.2015 Le Monde.fr (AFP)

 

Des drones ont été détectés au cours des derniers jours à proximité du site militaire nucléaire de l'île Longue, dans la rade de Brest, interdit au survol, a annoncé mercredi 28 janvier la préfecture maritime de l'Atlantique. Selon Lionel Delort, capitaine de corvette, ces vols se sont produits « dans la nuit du 26 au 27 et le 27 ».

« Ces vols de drones n'ont pas présenté de menace caractérisée sur la sûreté des installations » de la base, assure la préfecture dans un communiqué, qui précise que « ces détections ont été immédiatement traitées en mobilisant les moyens et les équipes de réaction prévus dans ce cas de figure ».

 

Suite de l'article

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27 janvier 2015 2 27 /01 /janvier /2015 12:55
Un patrouilleur de haute mer dans l’ombre des SNLE

 

27/01/2015 Sources Marine nationale

 

Un dimanche de janvier, 22h. Le Commandant L’Herminier appareille de la base navale de Brest pour escorter un SNLE (sous-marin nucléaire lanceur d’engins) de retour de patrouille. Quatre jours de mer dans des conditions difficiles. Une mission habituelle pour l’équipage. Une mission prioritaire également pour le commandement des opérations de la marine à Brest. La  crédibilité de la force océanique stratégique en dépend.

Cette mission de soutien à la FOST (force océanique stratégique) constitue aujourd’hui le quotidien de l’équipage de l’aviso Commandant L’Herminier. Une mission qu’il réalise depuis novembre dernier, à la suite d’une période d’entretien et d’un stage de remise en condition opérationnelle.

Du 14 avril au 11 octobre 2014, l’aviso Commandant L’Herminier a subi un arrêt technique majeur pour redonner du potentiel à ses installations et déployer le nouveau système de communication RIFAN 2. L’implication forte de l’équipage a permis de terminer cette phase d’entretien avec plusieurs jours d’avance sur le planning industriel.

Dès la fin de la période d’entretien, l’aviso Commandant L’Herminier a repris la mer pour retrouver sa disponibilité opérationnelle. Les créneaux d’entraînement individuel ont été particulièrement intenses : manœuvres AVIA avec le concours des flottilles 33F et 34F, exercices sécurité et de maîtrise des capacités opérationnelles avec le bâtiment de commandement et de ravitaillement Somme, mises en œuvre des procédures de lutte sous la mer ou encore tirs de tous calibres.

 

Un patrouilleur de haute mer dans l’ombre des SNLE

« Assurer la liberté d’action des SNLE »

 

La Marine nationale met en œuvre les moyens nécessaires pour assurer en permanence la protection et la sûreté des SNLE. Pour cela, un certain nombre d’unités, frégates ASM, avisos, chasseurs de mines, avions de patrouilles maritimes, vedettes de gendarmerie maritime, fusiliers marins et compagnies de l’Armée de Terre sont déployées, en mer, en l’air ou en alerte sous court préavis selon la situation des SNLE.

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26 janvier 2015 1 26 /01 /janvier /2015 12:35
ROKS Lee Eokgi (SS 071) transiting on the surface photo US Navy

ROKS Lee Eokgi (SS 071) transiting on the surface photo US Navy

 

2015-01-11 By Yi Whan-woo -- koreatimes.co.kr

 

The Navy will inaugurate its first submarine command early next month in Jinhae, South Gyeongsang Province, the Ministry of National Defense said Sunday.

 

The command's fleet will be composed of under 2,000-ton submarines to begin with, but will be expanded to vessels displacing 3,000 tons.

 

"Feb. 2 is the date for the launch," ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok said, refusing to give other details.

 

The inauguration of the command comes at a time when North Korea maintains a significant numerical superiority with its fleet of 70 subs, about 20 of them being of the 1,800-ton Romeo class. Recent reports have said the North is putting finish touches on an upgraded version of the Soviet-designed Romeo that it has converted into being vertical missile launch capable.

 

The Navy currently operates nine 1,200-ton submarines and four 1,800-ton ones under its Ninth Submarine Flotilla in the port city of Jinhae.

 

The fleet, led by a rear-admiral (lower half), is one of the Navy units. They include three commands that are led by rear-admirals (upper half).

 

According to Navy sources, the submarine command will acquire five additional 1,800-ton submarines by 2018, increasing the military's total number of submarines from the current 13 to 18.

 

"A conventional submarine can remain underwater without recharging for longer if its weight is heavier," a Navy source said. "A 1,200-ton submarine can operate for three consecutive days while a 1,800-ton one can travel for about 15 days."

 

A rear-admiral (upper half) will also lead the newly-established unit, according to the source.

 

The defense military's announcement was made in accordance with the Defense Reform Plan (DRP) initiated in 2005.

 

The DRP seeks to enhance the Armed Forces' war capabilities, while enhancing its security alliance with the U.S. military by 2020 to deter North Korea's provocations.

 

The announcement also came amid growing the importance of strengthening Seoul's anti-submarine capabilities in the wake of North Korea's deadly torpedo attack on the Navy frigate Cheonan in March 2010 that killed 46 South Korean sailors. A multinational investigation concluded the North was the perpetrator, although it has denied it.

 

Under the submarine command, the Navy plans to put six 3,000-ton ballistic missile submarines into operation starting 2020.

 

The total number of the submarines, however, will be kept at 18 because six 1,200-ton ones will be scrapped by then, according to the Navy source.

 

A military expert turned down speculation that the submarine command could add fuel to ongoing controversy over a military arms race in Northeast Asia.

 

"Our neighboring countries, including the U.S., China and Japan, are familiar with DRP and they have not been against it," said Shin In-kyun, the president of the Korea Defense Network. "Moreover, the number of our submarines by 2020 will be still less than those owned by our neighbors."

 

He cited that North Korea and China operate some 70 submarines each, while Japan has 22.

 

Among Pyongyang's submarines, 20 of them displace 1,800 tons; 40 others, 325 tons; and the rest, 130 tons, according to Shin.

 

The Stalinist state is said to be building a 2,500-ton sub, which will be capable of carrying nuclear ballistic missiles, he said.

 

"By setting up a submarine command, we'll be able to lay the groundwork for military deterrence underwater," Shin said.

 

In December last year, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un stressed "maneuvering skills of submarines" to enhance the combat capability of Pyongyang's naval forces.

 

In August 2014, U.S. intelligence agencies speculated that the nuclear-armed regime has developed submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs). They pointed out that Pyongyang secretly acquired several SS-N-6s, a type of SLBM, from Russia some time ago.

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23 janvier 2015 5 23 /01 /janvier /2015 12:54
Le siège social de DCNS à Paris (Crédits DCNS)

Le siège social de DCNS à Paris (Crédits DCNS)

 

23/01/2015, Michel Cabirol – LaTribune.fr

 

Le groupe naval devrait enregistrer des pertes de 300 millions d'euros en 2014. La contribution de DCNS à l'EBIT de Thales qui est actionnaire à hauteur de 35%, sera négative d'environ 100 millions d'euros.

 

Ce n'est pas une surprise. DCNS, dont Thales est actionnaire à hauteur de 35%, estime  que l'exercice 2014 devrait se solder par une perte nette de l'ordre de 300 millions d'euros, compte tenu de l'enregistrement de charges et provisions complémentaires, ainsi que l'avait révélé "La Tribune". Le groupe naval a mené au cours des derniers mois un examen approfondi de la situation financière et contractuelle de plusieurs activités et programmes complexes qui connaissent des difficultés. Les principales conclusions de ces audits ont été communiquées aux instances de gouvernance de DCNS.

Pour Thales, qui consolide DCNS par mise en équivalence, la contribution de DCNS à l'EBIT du groupe d'électronique "serait ainsi négative d'environ 100 millions d'euros sur l'exercice 2014, contre une contribution attendue proche de l'équilibre (et une contribution positive de 40 M€ en 2013)", a expliqué Thales dans un communiqué publié ce vendredi. Hors cet impact exceptionnel, Thales confirme que sa performance en 2014 devrait être conforme aux objectifs annoncés d'une stabilité des prises de commandes et du chiffre d'affaires et d'une progression de 5 à 7% de l'EBIT. La publication des comptes consolidés de l'exercice 2014 arrêtés par le conseil d'administration est prévue le 26 février 2015

 

Le nucléaire civil plombe DCNS

Sur la base des éléments fournis au comité central d'entreprise (CCE), les difficultés sur certains programmes se concentrent dans les activités de diversification dans l'énergie, essentiellement dans le nucléaire civil. L'ampleur des difficultés d'exécution rencontrées par DCNS depuis 2013 devrait conduire "à revoir significativement à la hausse les coûts à terminaison des projets en cours", notamment le réacteur de recherche Jules Horowitz pour le Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique et aux Energies Alternatives (CEA), a expliqué Thales.

Sur les programmes navals, les audits ont mis en évidence une augmentation des coûts à terminaison, tout particulièrement sur le programme de sous-marins nucléaires d'attaque Barracuda pour la France.

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20 janvier 2015 2 20 /01 /janvier /2015 17:35
L'Inde pourrait louer à la Russie le sous-marin nucléaire Kachalot

 

19.01.2015 Par La Voix de la Russie

 

L'Inde a entamé les négociations avec la Russie en vue de louer le sous-marin nucléaire K-322 Kachalot du projet 971 Chtchouka-B, communique une source dans le complexe militaro-industriel russe. Si les parties signent un contrat avant la fin de 2015, le bâtiment pourra être livré en 2018.

 

Avant, le sous-marin devra être modernisé conformément aux besoins de la marine indienne. Le ministère de la Défense d'Inde se propose de l'acquérir pour une durée de dix ans.

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19 janvier 2015 1 19 /01 /janvier /2015 12:55
Le SNA Casabianca - photo Didier Zaitoun Nice-Matin

Le SNA Casabianca - photo Didier Zaitoun Nice-Matin

 

19 janvier 2015 Portail des Sous-Marins

 

Autonome, aussi furtif que discret, puissamment armé, le sous- marin nucléaire d’attaque (SNA) est d’abord une arme de dissuasion redoutable. Non seulement capable de détruire navires et sous-marins ennemis, il est en mesure de déposer discrètement une équipe de commandos sur une plage, de réaliser des missions de renseignement et de surveillance des côtes avec prises de photos par le périscope.

 

Référence : Nice Matin

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9 janvier 2015 5 09 /01 /janvier /2015 17:40
B-237 diesel-electric submarine Rostov-on-Don Photo Admiralty Shipyards

B-237 diesel-electric submarine Rostov-on-Don Photo Admiralty Shipyards

 

9 janvier 2015. Portail des Sous-Marins

 

Un nouveau sous-marin classique russe, surnommé le “trou noir” par l’OTAN pour sa capacité à rester indétectable, a commencé les préparatifs en vue d’essais en eau profonde. Mais auparavant, il doit d’abord effectuer un voyage de 4.630 km pour rejoindre la mer de Barents.

 

« L’équipage du sous-marin Rostov-sur-le-Don, qui a été remis à la marine russe par les chantiers de l’Amirauté, a commencé les préparatifs pour le voyage de la mer Baltique vers la mer de Barents, » a annoncé le capitaine Igor Dygalo du ministère de a défense.

 

Avant que le sous-marin ne commence ses essais, il doit d’abord parcourir environ 2.500 nautiques entre St. Pétersbourg vers la mer de Barents. Après les avoir terminés, le sous-marin devra transiter vers son lieu d’affectation définitif, le port de Novorossiysk, en mer Noire. Il sera le 2è sous-marin sur les 6 qui doivent être basés en mer Noire d’ici la fin 2016.

 

Le Rostov on Don est le premier exemplaire de série de la 3è génération de sous-marins de la classe Varshavyanka (Projet 636, code OTAN : Kilo improved). Ce type de sous-marin serait le plus silencieux au monde. Il dispose d’un rayon d’action accru. Sa taille relativement petite lui permet de manœuvrer dans des eaux peu profondes.

 

Le sous-marin est équipé de torpilles d’un diamètre de 533 mm et de 8 missiles anti-aériens, ainsi que du missile de croisière d’attaque contre la terre Caliber. Il déplace 4.000 t. Sa vitesse en plongée atteint 20 nœuds et il pleut plonger jusqu’à 300 m. Son équipage est composé de 52 marins et son autonomie est de 45 jours.

 

Référence : RussiaToday

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8 janvier 2015 4 08 /01 /janvier /2015 17:35
Thailand Eyes Submarine Fleet

 

January 04, 2015 By Prashanth Parameswaran Source : The Diplomat (Japon)

 

Is Thailand about to realize its long-deferred dream of acquiring submarines?

 

Thailand may look to procure two or three submarines as part of an increased 2016 defense budget, finally giving the country a capability it has lacked for more than sixty years, The Bangkok Post reported Friday.

 

According to a source from Thailand’s defense ministry, the Royal Thai Navy (RTN) is expected to propose the procurement of two to three submarines in the 2016 budget, with the country’s defense minister Prawit Wongsuwon already backing the plan in principle pending cost considerations. The navy has been considering submarines from various sources, but the South Korean Chang Bogo Class submarine is reportedly the least expensive at around $330 million each.

 

To the seasoned observer, Thailand’s plan to acquire submarines is neither new nor surprising. Lacking a submarine capability since 1951, the country has tried since the 1990s to ink submarine deals with several countries, including most recently Germany and South Korea. Though they eventually did not materialize, many were expecting Thailand’s submarine quest to once again become a top priority once the ruling military junta seized power in a coup in May 2014.

 

Since then, all signs have pointed to the RTN preparing for an anticipated purchase of submarines. In July 2014, it officially launched a multi-million dollar submarine training center, a significant boost to its incremental capacity-building efforts, which have included sending officers abroad to South Korea and Germany for training courses. On November 20 last year, which marks Royal Thai Navy Day, Thailand’s navy chief Kraisorn Chansuwanich revealed that he had revived plans to procure submarines and presented his proposals to defense minister Prawit. Prawit had reportedly agreed with the plan but had instructed the navy to present detailed studies on the types of submarines it wanted and their costs to see if they were affordable.

 

Despite previous doubts about Thailand’s submarine quest, some officials insist it makes strategic sense and ought to be pursued urgently. They say submarines would help Thailand ensure the freedom of navigation in the vital Gulf of Thailand, which could be disrupted if, for example, lingering territorial disputes in the South China Sea spiral out of control with spillover effects. They could also help protect critical infrastructure as Thailand continues its involvement in the Dawei deep sea port project in Myanmar over the next few years.

 

More broadly, submarines can also serve as an effective deterrent and protect Thailand’s sovereignty at a time when many of its neighbors either have or are quickly developing submarine capabilities. Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia already have submarines, Vietnam has begun receiving its Kilo-class submarines from Russia, and even the Philippines – traditionally a laggard in this respect – is also eyeing such capabilities. The “keeping up with the Joneses” factor that partly drives Southeast Asian military modernization trends ought not to be discounted, even if it is not often publicly acknowledged by officials themselves. For all the rhetoric about ASEAN solidarity, military buildups are as much about wariness of, and competition between, each other as they are about external threats like China or other transnational concerns.

 

Even so, past experience suggests that renewed efforts in this direction ought to be viewed with caution. The high price tag of actually buying submarines still remains a major concern, even if doing so is now a more urgent priority. Internal differences between various actors within government have complicated plans before, and could do so again. And with political stability in Thailand hardly assured, there is no guarantee that the current government will be in place long enough to actually follow through on its intended objectives. As Thailand continues pursuing its long-deferred dream of acquiring submarines, past may yet again prove to be prologue.

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21 décembre 2014 7 21 /12 /décembre /2014 20:35
INS Arihant leaving Visakhapatnam harbour (dec 2014) - source Livefist

INS Arihant leaving Visakhapatnam harbour (dec 2014) - source Livefist


18.12.2014 Livefist

I've been watching this video on loop for an hour. Don't really care that the actual clip is only a few seconds long. This is awesome because it's the first public video of India's Arihant nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine, scooped by local journalists for India's Zee News network. Here she is escorted out of the Vizag naval harbour area on Monday. (And yes, that's clearly a P17 class stealth frigate in the foreground).

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18 décembre 2014 4 18 /12 /décembre /2014 18:55
Les sous-mariniers au NAUTIC 2014

 

18 Décembre 2014 Source : Marine nationale

 

À l’occasion du salon nautique, la Marine nationale a fait appel aux personnels des différentes forces opérationnelles de la Marine, afin qu’ils puissent présenter leurs missions et leurs métiers au public. Durant les dix jours de salon, dix sous-mariniers ont répondu présents et se sont relayés pour faire connaître les « bateaux noirs ».

 

Une conférence sur les forces sous-marines et les spécificités de la navigation sous-marine était animée 2 fois par jour auprès d’un public nombreux et intéressé. Les échanges avec les visiteurs ont été riches et chaleureux et ont permis, sans aucun doute, de « démystifier » ce métier extraordinaire.

Le vice-amiral d’escadre Louis-Michel Guillaume, commandant les forces sous-marines et la force océanique stratégique était également présent sur le stand de la Marine nationale à l’occasion de l’annonce officielle du programme du grand prix de l’école navale 2015.

La participation à ce salon est une grande réussite pour les sous-mariniers, qui ont pu parler des sous-marins avec la passion qui est la leur.

 

Une opération « PANNEAU OUVERT » à renouveler sans modération

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18 décembre 2014 4 18 /12 /décembre /2014 13:55
Barracuda class nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSN) - French Navy

 

13.12.2014 by navyrecognition.com

 

Between 2017 and 2027, Barracuda-type SSNs will replace Marine Nationale (French Navy's) current-generation Rubis/Améthyste-class SSNs. The Barracuda program represents a vital contribution to the renewal of France’s naval forces. The Barracuda submarine (Suffren class) was designed to be quieter than the current Rubis class SSN, even at higher speeds, with increased underwater detection capabilities and a larger weapons payload.

 

Read more

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18 décembre 2014 4 18 /12 /décembre /2014 13:20
US Navy’s interactive software to keep submarines on safe track

 

18 December 2014 naval-technology.com

 

The US Navy's new interactive software is set for installation onboard the guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG 53) this month, aimed at dramatically trimming down the time consumed in planning safe submarine missions.

 

Developed as part of the Capable Manpower Future Naval Capability programme, the US Office of Naval Research (ONR)-sponsored technology aims to strengthen the process of identifying the finest routes around risks in waterways globally.

 

ONR Warfighter Performance Department programme officer William Krebs said: "Our goal is for sailors to be able to carry out a mission effectively and safely.

 

"This system merges a variety of crucial data so planners can integrate information ahead of time and the command team can focus on the critical operations at hand."

 

ONR's Mission Planning Application technology, through partial automation and use of apps and widgets, will be able to rapidly check thousands of chart markings, while indicating potential hazards and creating optimal routes around rocks, reefs and other shallow spots.

 

The tool also synchronises navigation route maps and generates a visual combination of 'what, when, where, why and how' for every operation.

 

Integration of new technology on the Mobile Bay vessel will enable researchers to filter mission planning technology for the surface ship community.

 

Other members involved in the development of the new technology include Naval Research Laboratory, Naval Oceanographic Office, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific, Program Executive Office Integrated Warfare Systems, US submarine force and Royal Australian Navy.

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17 décembre 2014 3 17 /12 /décembre /2014 18:55
Première cérémonie de remise de médailles pour dévouement à la mer sur SNLE

 

17/12/2014 Marine Nationale

 

Le 15 décembre2014, sur la place d’armes de l’Escadrille des Sous-marins Nucléaires Lanceurs d’Engins à Brest, 47 sous-mariniers se sont vu remettre la médaille pour dévouement à la mer sur SNLE lors d’une cérémonie présidée par l’amiral Bernard Rogel, chef d’état-major de la marine.

 

Le 15 décembre2014, sur le site Roland Morillot, 47 sous-mariniers, du grade de QM à VAE, se sont vu remettre pour la première fois,  la médaille pour dévouement à la mer sur SNLE lors d’une cérémonie présidée par l’amiral Bernard Rogel, chef d’état-major de la marine, en présence du  vice-amiral d’escadre Louis-Michel Guillaume, commandant les Forces sous-marines et la Force Océanique Stratégique .

 

Une cérémonie qui   marque la rigueur, le professionnalisme et l’abnégation des sous-mariniers qui depuis 42 ans, à bord des SNLE, assurent la permanence de la dissuasion à la mer et participent à la préservation des intérêts vitaux de la Nation comme l’a rappelé le CEMM.

 

« Cette décoration, je l’ai voulue » a déclaré l’amiral Rogel, « elle récompense les actes de dévouement accomplis à la mer, à bord de nos SNLE, dans le cadre d’une activité opérationnelle commandée. ».

 

Cette nouvelle médaille  témoigne surtout de l’engagement des sous-mariniers sur lesquels repose, in fine,  la crédibilité de la composante océanique de dissuasion et exprime ainsi  la reconnaissance de la Nation envers ceux ayant fait preuve de dévouement au cours de leur service au sein de la FOST.

 

« Entretenez votre esprit d’exigence et visez l’excellence. C’est ce qui fait notre force et notre crédibilité » a conclu l’amiral Rogel.

 

Ainsi, si l’action des sous-mariniers est par nature secrète, cette médaille est un hommage à la hauteur de leur mission au service de la France

Première cérémonie de remise de médailles pour dévouement à la mer sur SNLE

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17 décembre 2014 3 17 /12 /décembre /2014 08:30
New Submarine Squadron at Naval Support Activity Bahrain


16 déc. 2014 US Navy

 

All Hands Update December 16, 2014 #2
Submarine Squadron 21 replaced the Commander, Task Forces 54 Detachment December 14th at Naval Support Activity Bahrain.

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16 décembre 2014 2 16 /12 /décembre /2014 18:35
The indigenously built nuclear-powered ballistic submarine INS Arihant seen off Visakhapatnam on Monday. Photo: K.R. Deepak

The indigenously built nuclear-powered ballistic submarine INS Arihant seen off Visakhapatnam on Monday. Photo: K.R. Deepak


15.12.2014 by Livefiist

Staff photographer with The Hindu newspaper scoops this great shot of Arihant, India's indigenously developed nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine as it pushes out to sea today for long-awaited sea trials in the Bay of Bengal. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar was in Visakhapatnam for the cast-off ceremony. Love the fuzzy picture, the first photograph of the Arihant's entire surfaced silhouette!

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15 décembre 2014 1 15 /12 /décembre /2014 17:50
Spearfish Heavyweight Torpedo

 

15 déc. 2014 BAE Systems

 

We’ve been awarded a £270 million contract by The UK’s Ministry of Defence (MOD) to upgrade the Spearfish Heavyweight Torpedo for the Royal Navy’s submarines.

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15 décembre 2014 1 15 /12 /décembre /2014 17:49
HMS Astute (S119) photo Royal Navy

HMS Astute (S119) photo Royal Navy

 

15 December 2014 Ministry of Defence and The Rt Hon Michael Fallon MP

 

The deal with BAE Systems ensures the sustainment of the UK’s torpedo manufacturing capability in Portsmouth for another 10 years.


 

The MOD has awarded a £270 million contract to upgrade the Royal Navy’s Spearfish heavyweight torpedoes.

The Spearfish programme supports 60 jobs in Portsmouth where the torpedo is designed and manufactured with an additional 40 new skilled engineering vacancies being recruited for to work on the programme by BAE Systems.

The company also estimates that hundreds of jobs will be sustained in the company’s supply chain.

This year the MOD has already awarded BAE Systems a £600 million contract to run Portsmouth Naval Base and a £70 million Type 45 destroyer support contract that combined sustains more than 2,000 jobs in the Portsmouth region, including skilled engineering roles.

Defence Secretary, Michael Fallon, said:

This contract award is good news for the Royal Navy, the UK and the city of Portsmouth where around 100 engineering jobs will be created or sustained.

Portsmouth continues to play a significant part in defence as illustrated by this contract award and has a bright future ahead of it thanks to recent investment such as the £600 milliion contract to run the naval base, sustaining thousands of jobs, and the upcoming £100 million of infrastructure work to prepare the city for the arrival of the Queen Elizabeth Class Carriers.

The Spearfish Upgrade includes a new warhead, a change to the fuel system to improve safety, full digitisation of the weapon and a new fibre optic guidance link to improve performance.

They are carried by the Royal Navy’s Astute, Vanguard and Trafalgar Class submarines and can target both underwater and surface threats.

Once the torpedo has been fired Spearfish homes in on its target using sonar and will be controlled by the submarine after launch via the new fibre optic link.

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12 décembre 2014 5 12 /12 /décembre /2014 12:35
China's submarine noose around India

 

December 15, 2014 Sandeep Unnithan - India Today


Submarine game: How China is using undersea vessels to project power in India's neighbourhood

 

Four decades after the 1971 India-Pakistan war, India's intelligence agencies are once again scanning a stretch of coastline in southern Bangladesh. Cox's Bazar was rocketed and strafed by INS Vikrant's fighter aircraft to cut off the enemy's retreat into the Bay of Bengal. Today, 43 years later, it sets the stage for China's dramatic entry into India's eastern seaboard.

Assessments from the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) and naval intelligence say the Bangladesh Navy will station two ex-Chinese Ming-class submarines on bases that are less than 1,000 km away from Visakhapatnam, home to the Indian Navy's nuclear powered submarine fleet and the Defence Research and Development Organisation's (DRDO) missile test ranges at Balasore.

The developments on India's Arabian Sea flank are equally ominous. Intelligence officials say that over the next decade, China will help Pakistan field submarines with the ability to launch nuclear-tipped missiles from sea. Submarines, analysts say, are China's instrument of choice to not just challenge the Indian Navy's strategy of sea domination but also to undermine India's second-strike capability. These developments have been accompanied by a flurry of Chinese submarine appearances in the Indian Ocean this year-Beijing sent two nuclear submarines and a conventional submarine. Two of them made port calls in Colombo, triggering concern in New Delhi.

Toehold in the Bay

"No one interested in geopolitics can afford to ignore the Bay of Bengal any longer," geopolitical analyst Robert Kaplan wrote in a seminal essay in Stratfor in November. "This is the newold centre of the world, joining the two demographic immensities of the Indian subcontinent and East Asia." For India, the Bay of Bengal is the launch pad for a 'Look East' policy that has received renewed attention under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The Indian Navy is enhancing force levels at its Visakhapatnam naval base even as it has begun building a secret base for a proposed fleet of nuclearpowered submarines at Rambilli, south of Visakhapatnam. Equipped with the 700-km range B05 submarine launched missiles, the Arihant-class submarines will have to patrol closer to the shores of a potential adversary. But equipped with the 3,500-km range K-4 missiles currently being developed by the DRDO, the Arihant and her sister submarines can cover both Pakistan and China with nuclear-tipped missiles from within the Bay of Bengal, providing the "robust second-strike capability" as stated in India's nuclear doctrine.

Inputs suggest Bangladesh has acquired land and fenced locations at the Kutubdia Channel near Cox's Bazar and the Rabnabad Channel near West Bengal. Kutubdia, intelligence officials say, is likely to feature enclosed concrete 'pens' to hide submarines. The possibility of Chinese submarines using this base provides a fresh equation to the strategic calculus.

"Our submarines become susceptible to tracking from the time they leave harbour," says veteran submariner and former Southern Naval Command chief vice-admiral K.N. Sushil (retired). "But a far more worrying strategy is China's ability to be able to threaten our assured second-strike capability. That effectively tips the deterrence balance."

Chinese Han-class submarine Changzheng 2 in Colombo.West Coast Worries

Of greater long-term worry to Indian analysts is a strategic submarine project China finalised with Pakistan in 2010. Intelligence sources say this three-part programme will transform the Pakistan Navy into a strategic force capable of launching a sea-based nuclear weapons strike. Pakistan will build two types of submarines with Chinese assistance: the Project S-26 and Project S-30. The vessels are to be built at the Submarine Rebuild Complex (SRC) facility being developed at Ormara, west of Karachi. Intelligence sources believe the S-30 submarines are based on the Chinese Qing class submarines-3,000-tonne conventional submarines which can launch three 1,500-km range nuclear-tipped cruise missiles from its conning tower. A Very Low Frequency (VLF) station at Turbat, in southern Balochistan, will communicate with these submerged strategic submarines. The Project S-26 and S-30 submarines will augment Pakistan's fleet of five French-built submarines, enhance their ability to challenge the Indian Navy's aircraft carrier battle groups and carry a stealthy nuclear deterrent. "Submarines are highly effective force multipliers because they tie down large numbers of naval forces," says a senior naval official.

Steel sharks on silk route

Speaking in Indonesia's Parliament last October, Chinese President Xi Jinping articulated a "21st century Maritime Silk Road". His vision calls for investments in port facilities across south and south-east Asia to complement a north Asian route. This year, the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) put steel into Xi's vision. In February, a Shangclass nuclear-powered attack submarine made China's first declared deployment in the Indian Ocean. This was followed by port calls made by a Han-class submarine in Colombo to coincide with a state visit by President Xi and a visit by a Song-class conventional submarine in November.

China's heightened activity in the Indian Ocean region is underscored by investments in a new port in Gwadar at the mouth of the Strait of Hormuz, Hambantota port in Sri Lanka, a container facility in Chittagong and Kyaukpyu port in Myanmar. "Such developments have sharpened China's geopolitical rivalry with India, which enjoys an immense geographic advantage in the Indian Ocean," says Brahma Chellaney of the Centre for Policy Research. "Aspects related to their (Chinese) deployment in international waters are part of securing their maritime interests," Navy chief Admiral Robin K. Dhowan told journalists in Delhi on December 3.

China's new military posture reflects the 'Malacca dilemma' faced by the world's largest oil importer. Close to 80 per cent of China's crude oil imports of 11 million barrels per day, the life blood of its economy, is shipped through the narrow Malacca Strait. Any disruption to this could threaten its economic growth. "Hence, China's economic interests in the Indian Ocean have now taken on an overt military dimension," says an intelligence official.

Naval intelligence officials who correctly predicted that China would use anti-piracy patrols as a pretext for deployments in the Indian Ocean feel vindicated. Their prognosis of this game of 'weiqi'-a game of Chinese chess which uses encirclement, is gloomy. "A full-scale Chinese deployment in the Indian Ocean is inevitable," an admiral told India Today.

"You can only watch it and prepare yourself for it." The preparations include acquisitions of long-range maritime patrol aircraft such as the US-made P8-I Poseidon, investment in anti-submarine warfare and inducting new submarines and helicopters to fill up critical deficiencies in force levels.

Measured Response

China's submarine thrust into South Asia coincides with Narendra Modi's renewed emphasis on securing India's perimeter. "India's response has to be nuanced, a mixture of coercion and largesse," says Jayadeva Ranade, a former RAW official and member of the National Security Advisory Board. While the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government scoffed at encirclement theories, the new Government is clearly concerned over the creeping Chinese presence.

National Security Adviser Ajit Doval voiced India's concerns at the 'Galle Dialogue' in Sri Lanka on December 1. He cited a 1971 United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) resolution mooted by Sri Lanka calling on the "great powers to halt further escalation and expansion of their military presence in the Indian Ocean".

India's defence diplomacy has been severely limited by its inability to offer military hardware to offset the Chinese presence. Over half the military hardware of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are of Chinese origin. In 2008, India called off a plan to transfer the INS Vela to the Myanmar Navy when it discovered the vintage Russian-built submarine was past its service life.

When plans to transfer hardware materialise, they are too feeble to make a difference-a solitary helicopter such as the one gifted to Nepal by Modi in November and a small ex-Indian naval patrol craft gifted to Seychelles recently. Often, there is a demand for capabilities where India itself is deficient. Bangladeshi officials stumped Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) officials last year when they asked India, and not China, to provide submarines. The Indian Navy is down to just 13 aging conventional submarines. The MEA suggested Bangladesh buy Russian submarines instead. Their efforts are yet to bear fruit. It is a gap China willingly fills.

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11 décembre 2014 4 11 /12 /décembre /2014 12:50
RCAF CP-140 Aurora involved in search for suspected Russian submarine


9 December 2014 by David Pugliese
 

The sighting of a periscope off the west coast of Scotland in November sparked a NATO effort to track down the submarine.

A CP-140 Aurora aircraft along with planes from the U.S. and France took part in the search organized by the Royal Air Force.

The search continued until last week, the BBC has reported.

Britain no longer has its own fixed-wing aircraft specifically designed to search for submarines so it called in aircraft from its allies, noted BBC defence correspondent Jonathan Beale in his report.

The UK would not confirm it was looking for a foreign submarine Beale noted in his report but there have been reports of increased Russian military activity in the area.

The UK’s Ministry of Defence stated that it “requested assistance from allies’ forces for basing maritime patrol aircraft at RAF Lossiemouth for a limited period”.

At the height of the search, two U.S., the RCAF Aurora, and a French Dassault Atlantique were involved, Beale wrote. An RAF Sentinel spy-plane and a Royal Navy warship also took part, he added in his report.

 

Jonathan Beale’s full article can be found here:

 http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-30398114

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