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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2016 11:06 am 
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NOTE: re-titled thread. Please scroll down for latest updates.

Interview with an ex-JMSDF submarine CO who now works in industry, who discusses the advantages of Japanese-made Soryu class subs that are one of the bids for Australia's sub tender:

Nikkei

Quote:

March 27, 2016 1:00 pm JST
Interview
Japan should protect tech secrets in Aussie submarine bid


TOKYO -- Japan's leading shipbuilders Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Kawasaki Heavy Industries are strongly promoting their technological strengths to Australia in a bid to win contracts to build that country's next generation of submarines. Mitsubishi Heavy said that it is considering building all the vessels in Australia, but hurdles remain, such as how to train local engineers in such a short period of time. Management of costs and protection of technological secrets are also major concerns.

Toshihide Yamauchi, councillor at the Taiheiyo Engineering, a Tokyo-based defense-focused consultancy, discussed how the Japanese camp can prepare for these challenges, in a recent interview with The Nikkei. Yamauchi previously served as captain of the Japanese submarine Setoshio.

(...SNIPPED)



Quote:
Q: Compared to the German and French rivals in the bidding, what are the advantages of the Japanese submarines?

A: The Japanese submarines can dive much longer without having to surface. This is a significant technology. Japan's Ministry of Defense has said it plans to replace conventional lead-acid batteries with more powerful lithium-ion cells, which will enable the vessels to cruise at high speeds underwater.

The Japanese submarine is as capable in combat as the German boats. Our country is also advanced in combat systems (which can pick out specific sounds of the enemy from surrounding noise and conduct operations based on this information). In addition, Japan has a well-developed supply chain for submarine building. There are companies that can custom-make even a single screw for a submarine.

(...SNIPPED)


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Last edited by Haijun watcher on Fri Nov 23, 2018 11:30 am, edited 6 times in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2016 12:15 am 
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The decision on the new sub will be announced next week. A lot of press lately seems to suggest that Japan is out of the race.

ABC News (Australia)

Quote:
Submarine deal: Successful bid for new Royal Australian Navy boats to be announced next week
Exclusive by political editor Chris Uhlmann
Updated about an hour ago


The Federal Government is preparing to announce the successful bidder for Australia's new fleet of submarines next week.

(...SNIPPED)

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2016 7:00 pm 
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No more hope for Soryus for Australia?

Wall Street Journal

Quote:
Japan Falls Behind in Race for Australian Submarine Contract
Japanese bid was viewed as risky because of inexperience building naval equipment overseas


By Rob Taylor
Updated April 20, 2016 6:36 a.m. ET
6 COMMENTS

CANBERRA, Australia—Japan has been virtually eliminated from a multibillion-dollar contest to supply Australia’s navy with new submarines, two people familiar with the matter said, with German or French competitors now favored to win one of the world’s most lucrative current weapons deals.

Senior Australian security ministers met Tuesday to consider offers to build 12 conventionally powered submarines in Australia, the people said. While the conservative government has yet to make a final decision, one of the people said the Japanese bid was viewed as having “considerable risk,” given Japanese inexperience building naval equipment overseas.

(...SNIPPED)

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 23, 2016 10:57 pm 
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"Loose lips sink ships" as the WW2-era saying goes:

Reuters

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Australian police to investigate submarine tender leak: ABC
Reuters – 22 hours ago

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian police are investigating how confidential information about the outcome of a tender process for Australia's next submarine fleet was leaked to the media, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported on Saturday.

It is the second leak from within the military acquisition project which has come down to a race between bids from French, German and Japanese companies for an A$50 billion contract to build 12 submarines.

Australia's Federal Police confirmed in a statement to the ABC that they had been asked to investigate, the broadcaster said. Police spokesmen were not available for comment.

(...SNIPPED)

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 25, 2016 3:01 am 
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Unfortunately the media is saying the Japanese wont get the tender.

The Australian Navy is a bit of a weird mix. The new destroyers which are taking excessively long to build are based on a Spanish design. Our current ANZAC frigates are German, the older Frigates are American and the last time we decommissioned destroyers they were American Charles F. Adams class. Our fleet oiler Success is a French ship and the old reliable Tobruk was a British Sir Lancalot class LHD. We ended up with American LST for a short period that were so rusted and trashed that it caused our Navy not to want to buy used American ships again.

There is no uniformity in our Navy.

I think a lot of the decisions are not based on what is best but more political such as to avoid the question why do we always buy American or British so in that sense those countries are now ruled out of supplying us even though we rely heavily on American weapons and combat systems.

What our country needs is a real good kick up the backside to get our military sorted out. We have heavy union led builders holding up ship construction to keep themselves in a cushy long term career opposed to pushing out new ships at the rate the rest of the world can produce them and that is why our government is seeking foreign tenders to sort out this rot once and for all.

I think on the national security issues Australia should either select ship designs from close allies we work with extensively such as USA or possibly Britain as part of our commonwealth alliance.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 25, 2016 5:49 pm 
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Sounds like France/DCNS won: https://twitter.com/TheTodayShow/status ... 0396721153

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 25, 2016 11:36 pm 
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More details on the winning French bid:

Sydney Morning Herald

Quote:
France wins $50b contract to help build Australia's new submarines

Date
April 26, 2016 - 1:14PM


David Wroe


Australia's new 12-strong submarines fleet will be built in South Australia, with France's DCNS winning the $50 billion contract. Courtesy ABC News 24.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has announced all 12 of Australia's next fleet of submarines will be built in Adelaide from local steel, with France winning the hard-fought global race for the $50 billion contract.


Mr Turnbull said in Adelaide on Tuesday morning that the decades-long program would create about 2800 direct jobs and help Australia transition to a 21st century economy.

(...SNIPPED)

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2016 10:41 am 
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Sutho wrote:
Unfortunately the media is saying the Japanese wont get the tender.

The Australian Navy is a bit of a weird mix. The new destroyers which are taking excessively long to build are based on a Spanish design. Our current ANZAC frigates are German, the older Frigates are American and the last time we decommissioned destroyers they were American Charles F. Adams class. Our fleet oiler Success is a French ship and the old reliable Tobruk was a British Sir Lancalot class LHD. We ended up with American LST for a short period that were so rusted and trashed that it caused our Navy not to want to buy used American ships again.

There is no uniformity in our Navy.

I think a lot of the decisions are not based on what is best but more political such as to avoid the question why do we always buy American or British so in that sense those countries are now ruled out of supplying us even though we rely heavily on American weapons and combat systems.

What our country needs is a real good kick up the backside to get our military sorted out. We have heavy union led builders holding up ship construction to keep themselves in a cushy long term career opposed to pushing out new ships at the rate the rest of the world can produce them and that is why our government is seeking foreign tenders to sort out this rot once and for all.

I think on the national security issues Australia should either select ship designs from close allies we work with extensively such as USA or possibly Britain as part of our commonwealth alliance.


While I know every Navy wants the wonders of phased array - Australia made a major mistake in not taking the four Kidd Class Destroyers from the US. SM-2, NTU, and the ability to replace the Mk-26 with Mk41 VLS at a later date made these outstanding ships they could have had at a very reasonable rate, and most of their systems still have the supply chain support of being present in the USN (Mk 26 GMLS and the legacy SM-2 being the notable exception). SPS-48 still in US service and getting maintenance and upgrades. SPS-49 still in US and Australian service, so pipeline already there. Mk 45 127mm/54 already in AUS service and still in US maintenance pipeline. LM-2500 already in Australian service and still in US pipeline.

That mechanically launched SM-2 is/was also present on the AUS Perry's, so not really a new add there. In fact, all of the legacy mechanically launched SM-2 rounds could have be available to Australia in a package.

And in my opinion, it was the absurd idea to take on used US Amphibs that killed that - you do not buy used USN amphibs unless you are a third-world nation desperate for vessels - Amphibs in the USN are the red-headed step-children, they never get enough maintenance through their lives - and the Newport LSTs were odd ducks to begin with anyway. The idea of putting that much effort into the floating scrap that those ships already were still frustrates me to this day. But, that became synonymous with used USN ships, and so one of the best bargains in vessel capability in the last 50 years was passed over.

Foolish.

Edit to add:

As this contract calls for a conventional version of the Barracuda, it does make one wonder if a Virginia could be built with the engineering space shortened and conventional (DE/Fuel Cell) engineering put in its place. Should be a shorter vessel overall as well. Could also eliminate some berthing and storage on the assumption of shorter endurance inherent in the conventional propulsion....


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2016 1:53 pm 
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SumGui wrote:
Australia made a major mistake in not taking the four Kidd Class Destroyers from the US.


Taiwan was the country that bought the Kidd class AAW DDGs. And they need all the ships-especially subs which they need the most- to face against the growing fleet of the PLA Navy of mainland China.

Besides, Australia's upcoming Hobart class AAW DDGs are newer ships and have AEGIS.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 12:51 am 
Funny, on the French news, it was stated that the subs will be built at four French yards.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 12:58 pm 
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DougC wrote:
Funny, on the French news, it was stated that the subs will be built at four French yards.


Quel site? Je ne peux pas le trouver.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 2:01 pm 
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Haijun watcher wrote:
SumGui wrote:
Australia made a major mistake in not taking the four Kidd Class Destroyers from the US.


Taiwan was the country that bought the Kidd class AAW DDGs. And they need all the ships-especially subs which they need the most- to face against the growing fleet of the PLA Navy of mainland China.

Besides, Australia's upcoming Hobart class AAW DDGs are newer ships and have AEGIS.


Agree on Taiwan, but the Kidds were offered to Australia and Greece before Taiwan.

Australia spent more on attempting to upgrade the Adelaide's to cover for the loss of the Adams class than they would have by replacing the Adams class with the Kidds in 1999-2001.

And they will be newer, whenever they finally get into service - 20+ years since they last had a platform really capable of defending anything other than itself.

"Increasing slippage has pushed the original planned 2014-2016 commissioning dates out by at least three years, with lead ship Hobart to be completed by June 2017, Brisbane in September 2018, and Sydney by March 2020. The AWD Alliance, Navantia, and the involved shipyards have been criticized for underestimating risks, costs, and time frames; faulty drawings and bad building practices leading to repeated manufacturing errors; and blame-passing. The alliance concept has been panned for having no clear management structure or entity in charge, and having the DMO simultaneously acting as supplier, build partner, and customer for the ships."

Right now it looks like a 20 year gap in AAW which the Australians tried to close by throwing money into the Adelaide upgrade (more money for less capability).


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 2:17 pm 
Haijun watcher wrote:
DougC wrote:
Funny, on the French news, it was stated that the subs will be built at four French yards.


Quel site? Je ne peux pas le trouver.



It was on France 24.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2016 5:50 pm 
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SumGui wrote:

Right now it looks like a 20 year gap in AAW which the Australians tried to close by throwing money into the Adelaide upgrade (more money for less capability).


Sutho,

You probably can see SumGui's reply above as well.

Do you know if the Labour party was in charge in your govt. when the decision to upgrade the Adelaides was made?

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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2016 2:55 pm 
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Another backgrounder article on why the French won the bid:

Reuters

Quote:
How France sank Japan's $40 billion Australian submarine dream

In 2014, a blossoming friendship between Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe looked to have all but sewn up a $40 billion submarine deal. Then French naval contractor DCNS hatched a bold and seemingly hopeless plan to gatecrash the party.

Almost 18 months later, France this week secured a remarkable come-from-behind victory on one of the world's most lucrative defense deals. The result: Tokyo's dream of fast-tracking a revival of its arms export industry is left in disarray.

In particular, Japan misread the changing political landscape in Australia as Abbott fell from favor. The Japanese group, which included Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) (7011.T) and Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI), (7012.T) also failed to clearly commit to providing skilled shipbuilding jobs in Australia. And Tokyo realized far too late its bid was being outflanked by the Germans and particularly the French, the sources involved in the bid said.

France, on the other hand, mobilized its vast and experienced military-industrial complex and hired a powerful Australian submarine industry insider, Sean Costello, who led it to an unexpected victory.

Japan's loss represents a major setback for Abe's push to develop an arms export industry as part of a more muscular security agenda after decades of pacifism.


"We put our utmost effort into the bid," the head of the Ministry of Defense's procurement agency Hideaki Watanabe said after the result was announced on Tuesday. "We will do a thorough analysis of what impact the result will have on our defense industry."

By the end of 2014, Japan was still comfortably in the driving seat thanks to the relationship between Abe and Abbott, which had begun soon after Abbott's 2013 election and strengthened quickly.

Japan and Australia - key allies of the United States - had wanted to cement security ties to counter to China's growing assertiveness in the South China Sea and beyond.

FRENCH OVERTURES

Still, France saw an opportunity to get into the game. In November 2014, DCNS CEO Herve Guillou prevailed on French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian to visit Australia and start the pitch for France.

Le Drian traveled to Albany in the country's remote southwest, where officials had gathered to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the first sailing of Australian soldiers to fight on France's Western Front during World War One.

The poignant shared history opened the door to discussions about the submarine contract, a source close to the French Ministry of Defense told Reuters.

"The French minister wished to be there for this important event. There, he held talks with his Australian counterpart David Johnston and with ... Abbott," said the source, who along with other officials asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

FIGHTING FOR JOBS

Soon after, however, Australia's political instability would erode Japan's advantage with the old guard.

In December 2014, Johnston, the Australian defense minister, was forced to resign after disparaging the skills of Australian shipbuilders.

South Australian lawmakers, worried that Abbott had quietly agreed to Japan supplying the new submarines, insisted the government look at options to build them in their state. They pressured the prime minister into holding a competitive tender which DCNS and Germany's ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKAG.DE) quickly joined.

In February 2015, Abbott called his "best friend in Asia", as he had previously described Abe, to tell him about the new bidding process. Abe sympathized and said he would do his best to comply, two sources with knowledge of the conversation said.

Yet, convinced the deal was still in the bag, Japan's bidding group dithered.

"Even though we were in the competition we acted as though nothing had changed," said one Japanese government source involved in the bid. "We thought we had already won, so why do anything to rock the boat?"

The Japanese did not attend a conference for the Future Submarines project in March, failing to understand the importance of the crucial lobbying event and leaving the field to their German and French rivals, sources within the Japanese bid said.

Japan's belated attempt to engage with potential local suppliers at a follow up event in August 2015 went badly.

Companies complained Tokyo was unwilling to discuss substantive deals. Having only ever sold arms to Japan's military because of a decades-old ban on exports that Abe lifted in 2014, neither Japanese company had any Australian military industrial partners.

And unlike France and Germany which quickly committed to building the submarines in Australia, Japan initially only said it would follow the bidding rules, which required building in Australia as just one of three options.


"The Japanese had been invited in on a handshake deal and were left trying to compete in an international competition having no experience in doing such a thing," an Australian defense industry source said.

By September 2015, Japan's key ally Abbott had been deposed by Malcolm Turnbull, blowing the competition wide open.

LOCAL EXPERTS


Industry officials said all of the sub offerings had some drawbacks, meaning other factors including experience and connections came into play.

Crucially, in April 2015, DCNS hired Costello, who had earlier that year lost his job as chief of staff of Australia's Defence Ministry in the wake of Johnston's resignation.

A former navy submariner who had also been the general manager for strategy at state-run Australian submarine firm ASC, Costello was ideally placed to lead a bid.

Had the Japanese called first, Costello would have likely have accepted an offer to head their bid, according to a source who knows Costello. "They didn’t pick up the phone," he said. Costello declined to speak publicly about the bid.

Costello's team drew up a list of a dozen tasks DCNS needed to complete to win the deal, including the critical job of winning over U.S. defense companies Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) and Raytheon Co (RTN.N), one of which will eventually build the submarine's combat system.

In a final coordinated push, a huge delegation of French government and business leaders visited Australia a month ago, touting the economic benefits of their bid.

LATE JAPANESE PUSH

Finally stung to action, Japan ramped up its campaign in September 2015. Senior defense bureaucrat Masaki Ishikawa stepped in to unite what had until then been a disjointed approach spread around various ministries, the Japanese ambassador in Canberra, Sumio Kusaka, and MHI.

Japan began talking about investment and development opportunities beyond defense, including the possibility of opening a lithium-ion battery plant in Australia, while MHI opened an Australia unit.

In a last ditch attempt to woo Australia, Japan sent one of its Soryu submarines to Sydney this month. But as it sailed home on Tuesday, Turnbull announced the deal had gone to DCNS.

In an echo of his first Albany trip, Le Drian heard of France's win on Monday as he attended an ANZAC Day service for Australia's war dead in northwestern France.

For Tokyo, another big international defense competition that could help Japan develop the arms export industry that Abe envisaged is unlikely any time soon.

A more likely tack will be joint development projects with overseas partners to embed Japanese companies in military industrial supply chains. That might even include components for Australia's French submarines, one source in Tokyo said.

Other Japanese officials still want Australia to explain why they lost so they can learn from the painful and bewildering experience.

"We thought up to the end that we could have won," another source in Japan said.

(Additional reporting by Nobuhiro Kubo in TOKYO; Editing by Lincoln Feast)



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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2016 1:55 am 
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Note the bolded lines that show Uncle Sam's interest in the Aussie sub replacement program:

Defense News

Quote:

Australia’s Submarine Decision: Concerns Down Under, Celebrations in Paris

(...SNIPPED)
France’s share of the prospective deal is €17 billion (US $19.5 billion), according to sources close to defense minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, weekly Le Point reported, while Reuters reported some €8 billion (US $9.2 billion) for DCNS. DCNS chairman Hervé Guillou welcomed the support from the Direction Générale de l'Armement procurement office, Navy chief of staff Adm. Bernard Rogel, Thales, Sagem, and Schneider Electric, a French energy company with a significant business presence in Australia.

The deal is also a win for Thales, holder of 35 percent of DCNS, with the French government holding the remainder. Thales' share of the Australian program is expected to be some €1 billion (US $1.2 billion), with €100 million ($115 million) per sub based on the sale of sonar systems, electronic warfare and periscopes, a Thales executive said.

With the selection of the French proposal, negotiations will begin for a three-year submarine design contract, said Marie-Pierre de Bailliencourt, DCNS executive vice president for development. A contract agreement is expected later this year or early in 2017, she added.

More choices remain for the submarine program, which is specified to have a US combat systems integrator and employ US weapons. Australia reportedly is considering bids from Raytheon and Lockheed Martin [emphasis added]— each already working on the Royal Australian Navy’s Air Warfare Defense destroyer, fitted with Lockheed’s Aegis radar with integration from Raytheon.

Installing a US combat system is one of the reasons for building the subs in Australia rather than France, as there is sensitive technology involved [emphasis added, nice justification for high cost of build domestically], said Robbin Laird of consultancy ICSA, based in Washington and Paris. “It will be interesting for Thales” in Australia he said, as the Australian subsidiary of the French electronics company will work closely with DCNS and the US combat systems integrator.

One of the issues to be worked through is guarding US technological secrets. DCNS has never worked with a US company on this scale.

“I can’t help but think that the US Navy has considered the full intellectual impact on any of the platforms that might be selected,” observed Guy Stitt of AMI International. “I think the Australians will have a process that assures that US intellectual property will be protected.”..


(...SNIPPED)

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2016 9:46 pm 
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China behind Australia's rejection of the Soryus?

National Interest

Quote:
Why Japan Lost Australia's $40 Billion Submarine Deal: Fear of China?
Malcolm Davis

May 3, 2016

With the outcome of the long-awaited SEA 1000 Competitive Evaluation Process seeing France’s DCNS announced as the international design partner for the future submarines, Australia must now manage the diplomatic fallout with the two failed bidders: Germany and, especially, Japan. As David Lang notes, ‘we should expect the CEP outcome to dampen the energy and enthusiasm that’s driven the bilateral relationship for much of the past two and a half years.’ There may also be disappointment in key defence circles within the US, given the very real strategic benefits that would’ve flowed to the Australia–Japan–US trilateral. But Japan’s lost bid isn’t simply a bilateral challenge for Australia–Japan defence and foreign relations. Australia has to manage China’s reaction.

The outcome is likely to have pleased Beijing, (and here) given that ‘Option J’ would have opened the doors to a greatly expanded strategic partnership between Tokyo and Canberra—both allied to the US. Paul Dibb summed up the situation:

"Beijing must be rubbing its hands with glee that we are not buying submarines from its adversary, Japan…there is every possibility that the harsh authoritarian leadership under President Xi Jinping considers it has successfully bullied Australia to kowtow to its demands."

< Edited >



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2016 8:59 am 
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As a Aussie I personally thought we should be getting the new Frigates production started before the subs....I would also have built a second shipyard either here in Adelaide or Whyalla on the site of the old shipyard there(right near the steel works too),
I have said this before when people start going on about the delays in the Hobart class! Its like a car production line the first few are crap until they sort out how to build it effectively!! Once skills have been learned (as we started with an unskilled (in shipbuilding) work force) the quality goes up (unless your management setup is rubbish...Oh wait we had that too!). An ongoing build like the US has with the Burke production would keep skilled workers going given the long build times these modern ships seem to need! Unfortunately they reached a point last year where they didn't need as many workers....so the lay offs began. Skills exiting to other industries because the Govt procrastinated in deciding what fancy weapons they cram into next ship...then they will try to get the cheapest one....

That's a bit rambling but I'm in a mood...lol

Cheers Bruce

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 02, 2016 8:56 am 
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an update:

Navy Recognition

Quote:
Australia chooses Lockheed Martin as Combat System Integrator for DCNS Submarines

Australia's Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne and the Minister for Defence Industry, The Hon Christopher Pyne MP announced that Lockheed Martin Australia has been selected as the preferred Combat System Integrator for Australia’s Future Submarine Program, subject to further discussion on commercial matters.

(...SNIPPED)

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:18 pm 
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Defence Aerospace

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Australia’s Future Submarine Program Reaches Major International Milestone
(Source: Naval Group Australia; issued July 9, 2017)

CHERBOURG, France --- Naval Group (formerly DCNS) and Lockheed Martin Australia today welcomed the official opening of Australia’s Future Submarine office by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, in the presence of the French Ministry for the Armed forces, Florence Parly.

In collaboration with the Australian Department of Defence, in what will be Australia’s largest defence capital investment program in history, Naval Group and Lockheed Martin Australia will deliver to the Royal Australian Navy a fleet of 12 regionally superior submarines.

The office is a tripartite secure facility which will house submarine designers, naval architects and engineers who will work alongside each other on Australia’s Future Submarine Program. The facility will be known as ‘Hughes House’, in recognition of Rear Admiral ‘Oscar’ Hughes, AO, RAN and his invaluable role in Australia’s submarine history as Director of the Collins Submarine Project.

(...SNIPPED)

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