Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Uncertain delivery date for nuclear submarines. Australia’s existing fleet still in use in 2050?

Nuclear submarines’ uncertain delivery date means ageing Collins class could be in use until , could be more than 50 years old by the time the Aukus deal delivers Australia’s nuclear fleet. Guardian, Daniel Hurst and Tory Shepherd
Fri 15 Oct 2021 

Australia’s navy chief has left the door open to keeping some of the existing Collins-class submarines in the water until 2050, amid uncertainty about the exact schedule for acquiring new nuclear-propelled submarines.

The government is already planning to extend the life of the six Collins class submarines by 10 years, with the extensive refitting work set to cost between $3.5bn and $6bn.

But the navy chief, V-Adm Michael Noonan, indicated on Friday that a “potential” option was to refit them a second time to further extend their life.

Given the first Collins-class submarines were commissioned in the late 1990s, that option could see them used until they are about 50 years old…….

The South Australian senator Rex Patrick accused the government of being “extremely reckless” with national security amid the latest revelations…….

At a shipbuilding committee hearing on Friday – the first since the $90bn French deal was dumped – senators explored concerns about Australia facing a “capability gap” while it waited for the new submarines to be ready……….

Labor – which has backed the Aukus plan – said the evidence raised many questions for the government, including whether the Collins class submarines would be able to withstand multiple upgrades of this type.

Labor’s defence spokesperson, Brendan O’Connor, asked: “If enhanced submarine capability is critical to our national security, why would we still have 50-year-old Collins Class vessels in 2050?”……..

The Australian government has set up a taskforce, with 89 members and growing, whose job over the next year and a half is to work with the US and the UK on “identifying the optimal pathway to deliver at least eight nuclear-powered submarines for Australia”……..

It remains unclear precisely how much the Australian government will have to pay to settle contracts with France’s Naval Group and another defence contractor, Lockheed Martin………….. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/15/nuclear-submarines-uncertain-delivery-date-means-ageing-collins-class-could-be-in-use-until-2050

October 16, 2021 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, weapons and war

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