B.A.E. & the Astute Class S/M

Discussion in 'Submariners' started by BillyNoMates, Oct 28, 2007.

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  1. I got a tour round the Astute in build Summer 06, mighty impressive, in the end its still a turd that sinks.
     
  2. Would you care to elaborate on your reply angry_mac?
     
  3. It's never ever sat right with me that all UK SSN's have, as their primary role, to support the SSBN's. These bloody great submarines who, if truth be known, get the best of every support going from stores right through to water space management. They are like royalty....they want for nothing.
    It's as is the SSN fleet does nothing else but fanny around looking after the Bombers. All so some chinless wonder can stand up in The Commons and say that the SSBN's are invulnerable and have never been detected on QRA......cough cough cough!

    Why not enlarge the follow on Astutes and fit a couple out with Nuclear TLAMS. The enlarged Astutes need not carry them all the time...just in periods of tension. The whole fleet could be rotated and during their operational life they could fullfil the SSBN role many times.


    Another thing.......does this goverment intend updating the 'Peace Camp' CND accommodation at Faslane along with the rest of the accommodation in Neptune. After all they are an integral part of the deterrent....or they think they are! :ufo:
     
  4. Remember on the first POLARIS (Reso), one of our storedems was upgraded to Priority 1 - a tilly was sent from Pompey to Faslane to deliver the said piece of vital kit to us - a frigging toaster !! I shit you not..........
     
  5. Hey, SELJUK, personally I am more than happy for a NUCLEAR submarine to get all the stores support it needs ffs!!

    Anyway, I was a bit confused by this quote from the article:"The Submarines have a cost of £3,492 million* By comparison American Virginia class submarines cost over $2.4 billion each."

    By by quick calculations, 3 Astutes cost £3.4 billion, which means they are about £1.13 billion each. Times it by two for dollars means about $2.26 billion each, which means they are only about $140 million cheaper than a US boat, which means just £70 million in real money. On a project this size that is not a lot of money cheaper.
     
  6. Even as an ex "bomber" man I have to agree with this suggestion. Trident was procured just at the wrong time, once the old Soviet Union had collapsed Trident was a bit of a white elephant but had to be kept going as we had nothing else - not even a 600lb bomb !

    I worked for a company supplying a system for Astute and I have to say I was totally appalled by the way this project has been run by BAE. The last two nuclear submarine projects run in-house by MoD were done pretty well, Vanguard, for example, came in on time and on budget.
    Then MoD fell for the old Consultant's line of "transferring the risk" to Industry - B****X !!! The risk will always stay with the MoD as they have discovered on Astute - it has cost them hundreds of millions more for the first three boats and they are years late. Net result, they do not have the capability to EVER manage a project like this in-house again and they don't have enough money to pay for 04, let alone 05-07.
    I read today that MoD has to find another £1B to fund our wars out East, Astute and Typhoon (the RAF one !) are again under threat.
    Having been on Astute I must say I was pretty impressed with what I saw - but I would like to hear the definitive opinion when (if !) it gets to sea.

    PS: when your equipment fails on Astute, don't blame the manufacturer - he probably delivered it on time - it then spent 4 or 5 years in a shed at Barrow going rusty before it got near a boat !!!
     
  7. A quick comment on this post. BAE "bought" Astute from GEC when they took them over. The contracted price was £2.4B - ie £800M per boat -you don't need to be a financial genius to see where that was going to lead !!
     
  8. Did store for war for an SSN in 1982 for the Falklands . Part needed was
    a store rob from Guz . They flew it up by Hunter jet and courier fast black to Faslane .-- very impressed



    :nemo: :nemo:
     
  9. New price for Virginia's

    Designers, managers and builders of the U.S. Navy's SSN 774 Virginia-class nuclear attack submarines say they have finally cut the program's cost to about $2 billion per sub.

    "As of September, we are about $50 million away from the $2 billion submarine," Capt. Dave Johnson, the Navy's Virginia-class program manager, said Oct. 19. As of now, he said, "we are at about $2.05 billion."

    The figure has been key to the Navy's hope to begin building two subs per year starting in 2012. Submarine proponents in Congress are hoping to jump-start that effort in the current defense bills, now in House-Senate conference. If they succeed, an additional sub could appear as soon as 2009.

    The new Navy cost estimates are for the 2012 submarine, and assume that two subs would be ordered in that year.

    Managers for General Dynamics Electric Boat, the chief design shipyard for the submarines, are optimistic they can get the cost even closer to the $2 billion goal.
    With a redesigned bow and at least 150 more improvements on the way, the program is "within about $15 million," John Holmander, Electric Boat's Virginia-class program manager, said Oct. 19. "And we have actual plans that should get us to the balance."
     
  10. Neither of those who have quoted the Virginia costs have mentioened the design costs, US programmes usually treat those seperately where as the A bot prices are total programme costs. The target cost of 2 Billion a boat is based on amortising the design and development costs over a production run of 30. Figures I have seen suggest the design and development costs share per boat is in the order of ,3 - .5 Billion which suggests the design and development costs for the whole programme are in the order of 9 Billion $, or 4.5 billion £s, a trifle more than the develop, design AND build costs for our 3 Astutes making them seem quite cheap.
     
  11. The biggest problem with the A-boats has been the loss of design skills in between the bombers and Astute (same thing has happened on the surface front but less obviously).

    The V boats were designed in the early to mid 80's, the T-boats just before that. Since then (20 yrs) there were a few follow-on SSN studies (the whole SSN20 rigmarole), including the very brief idea with exporting modified T-boats to the Canucks (until they realised PWR1 was a US design and subject to export control. But no full design was undertaken until around 1998 (a 12 to 15 year gap). In the meantime MoD had lost most of it's expertise, and VSEL/Barrow had lost a lot of the senior boys who knew what they were doing.

    Add that to the ludicrous original contracting regime for Astute and you begin to understand why BAeS called in GD Electric Boat a few years back to get the programme back on track. It's also one reason why a successor bomber is so important - the other being what that nice Mr Putin is up to at the minute.
     
  12. As I recall, the £B-odd for the Astutes covers the design, build and throughlife support for the boats for a 25 year period, including upgrades, maintenance and supply. I'm not sure the same is true for the cost of the Virginia (or Sea Wolf, for that matter!).
     
  13. That is not the case for Astute, I'm afraid. When I retired just over a year ago BAE had purchased no spares (other than a few on-board spares which were delivered with the main system) and had no idea how much spares and longer term support costs were going to be. I presume when these chickens come home to roost the MoD will be held to ransom yet again. In fact, the overall support strategy had not been decided - let alone the costs !
    Because of the delays to the boat programme much of the fitted equipment will need replacing after only a few years in service - the costs of this have not even been dreamt about.

    As I said in my first post - a truly appalling way to run a vital defence project.
     
  14. In the comparison between US & UK costs are we taking into account the difference between a US Billion and a rest of the world Billion. IIRC The former is a milion x million, the latter is a 1000 x million.
     
  15. Like everything else these days the US version is the 'standard' even if it is wrong.
     
  16. witsend

    witsend War Hero Book Reviewer

    Barrow's Role in the Astute Programme

    Barrow shipyard is the home of the UK's only Submarine Centre of Excellence. It currently employs around 3,450 people.A fully modular build system is being adopted in the build of the first three boats HMS Astute, HMS Ambush and HMS Artful by Prime Contractor BAE SYSTEMS . The Submarines have a cost of £3,492 million* By comparison American Virginia class submarines cost over $2.4 billion each.

    Reading the site i had a cuckle and the "submarine centre of excellence". I'm under the impression that a dodgy bit of wiring caused a major problem and that electric run down pumps are maybe not a good idea. Does a TG rotor fit through a hatch? Anyway i'm only spinning a second hand dit, can anyone back it up?
     

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