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Replacing the Subs

dimsum

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The general view is "They suck and none of them work". When I point out the deployments to Asia and the Med they generally are unaware.
Part of it is because unlike the surface fleet, the subs don't tell people where they're going until months after they've been there.

The Silent Service is supposed to be...er...silent. Great for operations, less great for recruiting.
 

CBH99

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Japan just announced the discovery of a

The general view is "They suck and none of them work". When I point out the deployments to Asia and the Med they generally are unaware.
What surprises me is even with a CBC special on the topic, showing a Canadian submarine off the coast of NK & assisting in enforcing sanctions…people still aren’t aware.

I find the issue of PR for the subs to be a bit of an enigma. On the one hand, good PR is good PR. Helps with recruiting, national pride, credibility, etc. Showcasing the upgrades to the submarines & countering negative press is important in those regards.

On the other hand, the fact that our submarine service can be quite active and not draw attention is also an advantage.


Just thoughts…
 

Underway

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On the other hand, the fact that our submarine service can be quite active and not draw attention is also an advantage.
Until we need to buy new submarines, and then it's an uphill battle. That new sub money (if the gov't is smart) goes overseas at least partially. And you'll have to sell that to the public who doesn't understand submarines. Given that most people only believe what they read on their social media, well that's a hard sell.
 

blacktriangle

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On the other hand, the fact that our submarine service can be quite active and not draw attention is also an advantage.
Although let's not pretend that any credible, well-resourced adversary couldn't figure it out, should they wish.
 

Colin Parkinson

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Until we need to buy new submarines, and then it's an uphill battle. That new sub money (if the gov't is smart) goes overseas at least partially. And you'll have to sell that to the public who doesn't understand submarines. Given that most people only believe what they read on their social media, well that's a hard sell.
Which is why the politicians avoid the subject, in their eyes there is no "political win" for them and it means diverting money from programs/grants/gifts/promises where they can gain a political advantage. If they were mature reasoning adults with a timeline beyond the next election they would see the utility and at the very least start the quest now for the right sub for us in 10 years.
 

CBH99

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Although let's not pretend that any credible, well-resourced adversary couldn't figure it out, should they wish.
Oh considering we post their port visits right on Instagram, even once out of port I’m sure they could narrow it down pretty quick
 

Maxman1

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It seems to me like the Dolphin II class subs would be a suitable replacement, since it's very close in size to the Victoria class and roughly the same size crew, but can dive twice as deep, has four 26 inch torpedo tubes which can also fire cruise missiles in addition to six 21 inch tubes.
 

Fishbone Jones

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Are we bound by agreement to have subs? I like subs, but I'd like some that spend more time at sea than in drydock.
 

Swampbuggy

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Are we bound by agreement to have subs? I like subs, but I'd like some that spend more time at sea than in drydock.
Wouldn't we all, eh? There's more to consider with subs than just the boats themselves, though. IIRC, just by being a member of the sub community allows us access to intelligence that would otherwise be off the table for us. I don't think it's a capability that we want to lose, because I doubt if it would ever come back. In the interim, having 3 boats in the water, with all the modern upgrades that have happened for sonar, comms, periscope and torpedo, will give Canada a capability it has never had before (at least consistently). It's time to start working on a plan for new ones, but I'm optimistic about the near future for the VIC class.
 

Maxman1

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It's like when the Bonaventure was decommissioned, we lost the capability of an aircraft carrier and the knowledge of how to operate a carrier and carrier-borne aircraft (the Banshees were removed in 1962 after the Cuban Missile Crisis without replacement).
 

dimsum

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It's like when the Bonaventure was decommissioned, we lost the capability of an aircraft carrier and the knowledge of how to operate a carrier and carrier-borne aircraft (the Banshees were removed in 1962 after the Cuban Missile Crisis without replacement).
There was also the fight between the RCAF, CA, and RCN on who should operate aircraft in the Canadian military.

But I digress.
 

JMCanada

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Assuming next submarines will not be nuclear, they would at least be AIP. Two technologies are available for long underwater patrols: Stirling engines (mainly Sweden, China & Japan under Swedish license) and fuel cells (Germany and their derivatives: Norway, Italy, South Korea). Battery systems still offer tens of MWh (10-20), while the former two must be in the range of 80-140 MWh, depending, of course, on the volume of the oxygen (LOx) and fuel stored.

So, the expected dutch selection between the sweeds and the germans to replace their Walrus is of much interest.

Stirling engines are a mature technology with rather small increments on efficiency to be expected. The main one being the development of the so-called "double AIP", that is a 150kW engine in lieu of the actual 75kW Kockums' units.

Fuel cell technology is also mature: up to 200kW marine units can be found in Ballard's portfolio. And this is actually a point for the RCN to prefer FCs over St.Eng. The problem here is how to storage the required hydrogen. Solutions:

1. Metal hydrides (germans). It works for the size of their boats, but is said to be very inefficient (only 2-4% of the weight is usable hydrogen).

2. Boric hydrides (indians). This is the technology India is developing. Supposed to be installed in an indian submarine by mid 2020s. Percentage of usable hydrogen might reach 10-12%.

3. Reformation of other fuels to produce hydrogen, either marine fuel (french), methanol (german proposal for the Australian type 216) or ethanol (spanish boats S-80, to be installed for the first time in third-of-class S-83, by mid-2020s also).

Reformation process needs high temperatures (hence, cooling) and yield CO2 as well (like St.Eng.), which may be diluted into the sea water. It also lowers the global efficiency of the process and introduces complexity (lower reliability?).

All this to say that DND/RCN might start working with Ballard on the development of a direct ethanol fuel cell, which would use ethanol directly on the FC without the need of reformation to obtain hydrogen.

 
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OldSolduer

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It's like when the Bonaventure was decommissioned, we lost the capability of an aircraft carrier and the knowledge of how to operate a carrier and carrier-borne aircraft (the Banshees were removed in 1962 after the Cuban Missile Crisis without replacement).
There's a tale about the Bonnie I read 30 + years ago. Its kinda sinister.
 

OldSolduer

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And...............
IIRC the Bonnie was refitted at a tremendous cost then sold for about $750,000 to a Japanese Taiwan salvage firm. It then was switched with its sister ship and ended up in the service of the Indian Navy. I know there are others on here who can dispel that tale or perhaps shed some more light on it.

Lnk

 

Colin Parkinson

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I heard that tale as well, I suspect a lot of the Bonnies equipment ended up in India and onboard their ship leading the causal observer to wonder....
 

Maxman1

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The Bonnie's catapult and other parts went to Australia to refurbish their Majestic class carrier, HMAS Melbourne.

The closest I can find to your story of the Bonnie being sold to India is the HMS Hermes, which was offered to Canada along with two Essex class carriers on loan from the US when we were looking to replace the HMCS Magnificent, both of which were turned down in favour of the HMS Powerful, an unfinished Majestic class, which would be finished as the Bonaventure.

The Hermes was put into service by the Royal Navy and was due to be retired in 1982, but became the flagship of the task force to retake the Falklands, then decommissioned in 1984 and sold to India in 1986.

There's also the HMS Hercules, another Majestic class, which was sold to India under the same circumstances and around the same time as the Bonaventure and commissioned as INS Virkant. They had a number of issues with the boilers around 1970, which were still present during and after the Indo-Pakistan War of 1971, after Bonaventure was scrapped, which, coupled with the fact Bonaventure was fairly unique among the Majestics with a very distinct silhouette due to using American radar systems and lattice mast and 3 inch guns instead of Bofors 40mm, while the Virkant was a standard Majestic, tells me this is a nonsense conspiracy theory.
 
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