Powered by MOMENTUM MEDIA
Powered by MOMENTUM MEDIA
Home / Maritime / No end in sight for manned submarines

Website Notifications

Get notifications in real-time for staying up to date with content that matters to you.

No end in sight for manned submarines

collins class hmas waller in jervis bay
Collins Class Submarine HMAS Waller entering Jervis Bay. Image via Commonwealth of Australia, Department of Defence.

Emerging technology will disrupt the current environment submarines operate in and create challenges that are currently unknown but the need for manned submarines will not disappear, opposition defence spokesman Richard Marles has said.

Speaking at the fourth Submarine Science, Technology and Engineering Conference in Adelaide, Marles argued that continuous developments in technology may have changed the landscape for defence equipment but Australia will still have a need for manned submarines when its full fleet of Future Submarines comes online in the coming decades.

Advertisement
Advertisement

"I know there is an argument out there that emerging technology might make more difficult the environment in which submarines operate," Marles said.

"I have no doubt it’s true that, sooner or later, technology will find ways to challenge the stealth of submarines, and we’ll see new forms of unmanned craft capable of doing some of the things our manned submarines do today.

"But this will not mean an end of manned submarines."

While there has been robust debate about the direction in which warfare is advancing, with some suggesting the balance is already shifting between submarine and anti-submarine warfare, Marles is confident the Future Submarines will adapt throughout their service life as needed.

"The developments in air-based equipment has not made conventional aircraft obsolete," Marles said

"The invention of anti-aircraft guns and surface to air missiles didn’t make using planes unviable. Neither helicopters nor drones have replaced planes, either. That’s not the way the technological race is run.

"The submarines we will build today will be different by the time they finish their service life. They will need to adapt to changes in technology around them, and work in an environment with new platforms around them."

Australia's Future Submarines will be built by Naval Group, which was selected in April 2016. The 12 submarines will be built in Adelaide with construction to commence in in 2021-22.

Construction will run into the late 2040s to 2050 timeframe.

No end in sight for manned submarines
Collins-Class-HMAS-Waller-in-Jervis-Bay.jpg
lawyersweekly logo

more from defence connect

Jul 16 2019
Growing proliferation challenges the technological edge of Australia and allies
The first delivery of a Russian S-400 air and missile defence system to NATO ally Turkey – combi...
Jul 16 2019
Sub delivery time frame presents opportunities for Aussie paradigm shift
While concern continues to mount about the design and delivery time frame for Australia’s $50 bill...
Jul 16 2019
Building an Australian grand strategy
Grand strategy is rarely mentioned in Australian defence debates. That’s unfortunate as it’s des...
FROM THE WEB
Recommended by Spike Native Network