French company DCNS says it will propose the world’s most advanced conventionally powered submarine – named the Shortfin Barracuda Block 1A – as its pre-concept design for Australia’s future submarine Competitive Evaluation Process (CEP).
The submarine takes its name from an indigenous species of the Barracuda found around Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.
Sean Costello, CEO DCNS Australia said DCNS had developed the Shortfin Barracuda with state-of-the-art technology from its larger cousin, the French Navy’s Barracuda nuclear-powered attack submarine, to meet Australia’s CEP requirements.
“While exact details remain confidential, DCNS can confirm the Shortfin Barracuda is over 90 metres in length and displaces more than 4000 tonnes when dived,” Mr Costello said.
“If selected, the Shortfin Barracuda will remain in service until the 2060s and the Block 1A platform will be updated and upgraded with new technology developed in France and Australia.
“The technical evolution of the submarine will be enabled by a strategic-level government-to-government agreement between France and Australia.”
He said DCNS was the only submarine-design company in the world to have design competencies in nuclear and conventional submarines, safely delivering submarines ranging from 2000 tonnes to 14,300 tonnes to navies all around the world.
A company statement says the DCNS Group generates annual revenues of €3.1 billion and employs 13,130 people (2014 data).