Australian Submarine Force


 

The Royal Australia Navy has currently a single class of diesel-electric submarines in operative missions. They have six Collins-class submarines, which is slightly outdated class of submarines since they began entering service in 1993.

This submarine class (Collins) was designed by the Swedish submarine builder Kockums as the Type 471 specifically to meet Australian requirements, many of which were derived from Australia’s need for great range without utilizing a nuclear propulsion system. The ships themselves were built in Australia by the Australian Submarine Corporation in Adelaide, South Australia.

Weapon system

The submarines are classified by the RAN as guided missile submarines (SSG), but are often referred to as hunter-killer submarines (SSK) in the international press. While these vessels represented a major increase in capability for the RAN, they have found themselves mired in numerous technical and operational problems. Meanwhile, the RAN has struggled to sufficiently crew their submarine fleet, with at times no more than two qualified crews available.

Plans to replace the entire fleet

The submarine fleet needs to be updated with new types of boats. The plans to replace the Collins with an even more ambitious twelve submarine program are under debate, although the design of this vessel has yet to be selected. There are many political issues and there are also many other questions related to whether the program can be successful in light of the problems encountered in their current fleet. One of the candidates that can be more successful to replace the Collins-class submarine is that Japanese-made Soryu-class boats, which seems to be a top-class submarine.

I found this book devoted to the RAN Collins submarines by Cambridge University Press in 2008 (1st edition). It is highly detailed book on the project and management during the design and construction of Collins submarines. The project itself was highly controversial and book interviews to many individuals involved in the project. The book also is beautifully illustrated with photographs from the collections of the Royal Australian Navy.

The current submarine vessels of the RAN are all based at the Fleet Base West. Commissioned dates are shown in parenthesis.

 



▽ Royal Australian Navy

 

HMAS_Stuart_FFH_153

Frigate Surface Force
The Australian Navy Frigate
Surface Force

 

HMAS Collins-class Rankin

Submarine Force
The Australian Navy
Submarine Force

 

HMAS_Canberra

Amphibious Force
The Australian Navy
Amphibious Force

 

HMAS_Perth

Patrol Force
The Australian Navy
Patrol Force

 

HMAS Ballarat

MineHunting Force
The Australian Navy
Mine Warfare Force

 

HMAS Stuart

Replenishment and Survey Force
The Australian Navy
Replenishment and Survey Force

 

HMAS_Warramunga_(FFH_152)

Training Ships and other Non-Commissioned Units
The Australian Navy Training Ships
and Other Non-Commissioned Units

▽Warships in the Royal Australian Navy (RAN)

Frigate surface Force (11): The principal striking force of the RAN comes from the eleven frigates of the surface force: eight of them belong to the Anzac class and the rest (three) are units from the Adelaide class.
Submarine Striking Force (6): The RAN operates six Collins-class submarines. Due to technical and manpower problems these submarines might be replaced in the future by Japanese Soryu-class submarines.
Amphibious Force (3): There are a huge variety of amphibious warfare units, which include two Canberra-class landing helicopter dock ships and the landing ship HMAS Choules.
Patrol Boat Force (13): There are thirteen Armidale-class patrol boats that perform coastal and economic exclusion zone patrols.
Mine Hunting and Warfare Force (4 + 2 in reserve):
There are four Huon-class vessels that are used for minehunting and clearance (another two are commissioned but in reserve since October 2011).
Replenishment Force (2 + 6 survey duties):
The task for replenishment at sea is provided by two ships, Sirius and Success. In addition, there are two Leeuwin-class and four Paluma-class vessels perform survey and charting duties.
Training Units (1 + 1 support vessel + 2 patrol boats):
The RAN operates the sail training ship Young Endeavour, the support vessel ADV Ocean Shield, and two Cape-class patrol boats. The latter ones are acquired thanks to the Australian Border Force.


 

Amphibious Force

sphere Canberra-class

sphere HMAS Adelaide L01
sphere HMAS Canberra L02 [Flagship of the RAN]

Frigate Surface Force

sphere Frigates Anzac-class

sphere Anzac FFH 150 (18 May 1996)
sphere Arunta FFH 151 (12 December 1998)
sphere Warramunga FFH 152 (31 March 2001)
sphere Stuart FFH 153 (17 August 2002)
sphere Parramatta FFH 154 (4 October 2003)
sphere Ballarat FFH 155 26 (June 2004)
sphere Toowoomba FFH 156 8 (October 2005)
sphere Perth FFH 157 26 (August 2006)

sphere Frigate Adelaide-class

sphere Darwin FFG 04 (21 July 1984)
sphere Melbourne FFG 05 (15 February 1992)
sphere Newcastle FFG 06 (11 December 1993)

Submarines Force

sphere Collins-class

sphere Collins SSG 73 (27 July 1996)
sphere Farncomb SSG 74 (31 January 1998)
sphere Waller SSG 75 (10 July 1999)
sphere Dechaineux SSG 76 (23 February 2001)
sphere Sheean SSG 77 (23 February 2001)
sphere Rankin SSG 78 (29 March 2003)

Australian Patrol Boat Group

sphere Armidale-class

sphere Armidale ACPB 83, 24 June 2005, HMAS Coonawarra
sphere Larrakia ACPB 84, 10 February 2006, HMAS Coonawarra
sphere Bathurst ACPB 85, 10 February 2006, HMAS Coonawarra
sphere Albany ACPB 86, 15 July 2006, HMAS Coonawarra
sphere Pirie ACPB 87, 29 July 2006, HMAS Coonawarra
sphereMaitland ACPB 88, 29 September 2006, HMAS Coonawarra
sphere Ararat ACPB 89, 13 November 2006, HMAS Coonawarra
sphereBroome ACPB 90, 10 February 2007, HMAS Coonawarra
sphere Wollongong ACPB 92, 23 June 2007 HMAS Cairns
sphere Childers ACPB 93, 7 July 2007, HMAS Cairns
sphere Launceston ACPB 94, 22 September 2007, HMAS Cairns
sphereMaryborough ACPB 95, 8 December 2007, HMAS Coonawarra
sphere Glenelg ACPB 96, 22 February 2008, HMAS Coonawarra

Australian Mine Warfare Force

sphere Huon-class

sphere Huon M 82, 15 May 1999, HMAS Waterhen
sphere Hawkesbury M, 83 12 February 2000, HMAS Waterhen In reserve
sphere Norman M 84, 26 August 2000, HMAS Waterhen In reserve
sphere Gascoyne M 85, 2 June 2001, HMAS Waterhen
sphere Diamantina M 86, 4 May 2002, HMAS Waterhen
sphere Yarra M 87, 1 March 2003, HMAS Waterhen

Replenishment Force

sphere HMAS Sirius (O 266)
sphere HMAS Sucess (OR 304)

Hydrographic survey

sphere Leeuwin-class

sphere Leeuwin A 245, 27 May 2000, HMAS Cairns
sphere Melville A 246, 27 May 2000, HMAS Cairns

sphere Paluma-class

sphere Paluma A 01, 27 February 1989, HMAS Cairns
sphere Mermaid A 02, 4 December 1989, HMAS Cairns
sphere Shepparton A 03, 24 January 1990, HMAS Cairns

Australian Navy Training Ships

sphere Training Ship

sphere Sail Training Ship Young Endeavour

sphere Cape-class patrol boats


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