HMS Agincourt and her Astute class sisters are the largest, most advanced and most powerful attack submarines ever operated by the Royal Navy, combining world leading sensors, design and weaponry in a versatile vessel.

Confirmation of the build of the seventh Astute class nuclear submarine, HMS Agincourt, and a £2.5 billion pounds investment was announced earlier today.

Agincourt will have provision for up-to 38 weapons in six 21-inch torpedo tubes. The submarine will be capable of using Tomahawk Block IV land-attack missiles with a range of 1,000 miles and Spearfish heavyweight torpedoes.

For detecting enemy ships and submarines, the Astute class are equipped with the sophisticated Sonar 2076, an integrated passive/active search and attack sonar suite with bow, intercept, flank and towed arrays. BAE claims that the 2076 is the world’s best sonar system. All of the Astute-class submarines will be fitted with the advanced Common Combat System.

The manufacturer say that no other attack submarine is as technologically advanced. In the words of BAE, the Astute class is “designed and engineered to be the stealthiest submarine of her type, equipped with the latest and most powerful sonar suite and secure communications facilities, while exhibiting a low noise signature and optimum detection avoidance characteristics”.

The seven Astute class nuclear powered submarines will have the capability to circumnavigate the globe without surfacing, limited only by their food storage capacity. Able to deploy rapidly, they are powered by a nuclear reactor that can run for their 25 year lifespan without refuelling.

Courtesy of BAE, we’ve also been able to publish an interesting list of trivia. Did you know…

  • Astute class submarines are the UK’s largest and most powerful attack submarines and can strike at targets up to 1,000km from the coast with pin-point accuracy.
  • Astute submarines are the first nuclear submarines to be designed entirely in a three-dimensional, computer-aided environment.
  • Design and construction of an Astute submarine has been described as ‘more complex than that of the space shuttle.’
  • If the cables on board an Astute Submarine were laid out end-to-end, they would stretch from Barrow to Preston.
  • An Astute submarine’s 90-day dived endurance is only limited by the amount of food that can be carried and the endurance of the crew.
  • Astute submarines are the first Royal Navy Submarine not to be fitted with optical periscopes – instead the vessel employs high specification video technology.
  • Astute submarines will be the quietest ever operated by the Royal Navy.
  • The Devonshire Dock Hall is BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines main build facility, standing 51m high, 58m wide and 260m long.
  • The first submarine for the Royal Navy was built in Barrow, and every submarine currently in service was also built there, Holland 1.
  • Astute class submarines are designed not to require refuelling throughout her projected 25-year life.
  • 10-week patrol the 98-strong crew of a Astute will get through (on average): 18,000 sausages and 4,200 Weetabix for breakfast.

38 COMMENTS

  1. Great name. 2 fingers up to the French ala longbowmen.
    The astute class is without any doubt the best sub in the world at this time. Just wished we had a few more on order. 7 attack submarines is not enough to face down a resurgent Russia.

    • It’s not seven. Seven is our contribution to NATO facing down Russia. We need to keep bringing in the alliance to these discussions. We fought with the French in Crimea, with them again in the revolution, alongside NATO during the cold war, alongside the yanks in proxy wars like Afghanistan.

      • Without any doubt? That’s impossible unless you have served on all of the world’s best. The Virginia class has only 4 tubes but also has a VLS which is better in my opinion than 6 torpedo tubes. The Yasen class has 10 tubes and a VLS so it is better in that respect than the Astutes and Virginia class. The Astutes may have a better sonar system than Virginia but the Americans are constantly improving them so it may not have the edge soon. Not much is available on the Yasen sonar system. All 3 classes are undoubtedly extremely quiet. The fact is that there is too much classified information about subs to know what the best is. One of the best, yes, but any attempt at identifying the very best is meaningless speculation.

        • Agree. It’s a leading edge piece of kit, one of the leaders, and we should be happy with that.

          Best in the world gets banded around a lot.

    • Terrible name i would of gone HMS Ace or seen as we need to suck up to Trumpy HMS America.

      ala longbowmen seriously The empire is gone you know…

          • Are Italians who study and recall the height of the Roman Empire little Italians? Course not.

            There are traditional rivalries brought up by all sides and Agincourt a famous battle that vanquished the knight, so I see no issue with it being raised.

            People really need to lighten up. PC very much in action.

            Does not make one a “little englander” any more than French calling Brits Roast Beefs make them all cooks!

            Come on.

          • My apologies to everybody before hand:
            Jaz wrote:
            point was directed at the little englander above.
            F off you twat

      • Trump does not care what you name it, no need to suck up to him at all. The real problem is only 7 boats are just too few.

    • Last time I checked the French weren’t our enemies. But good name nonetheless, great submarine and even better news!

  2. Well in this time of turmoil is it wise to keep reminding an ally of battles past, have we nothing in the past 600 years that would be more appropriate ,I don’t like the name I don’t like the implied or otherwise of 2 fingers up to one of our closest allies.

    So no i won’t Come on .

    As for the two finger comment i hope he doesn’t think the story about the V sign has anything to do with Agincourt it doesn’t .

    • Fair enough Jas.

      I don’t take things so seriously and doubt the French do either with the naming of a brit sub but take your point we could have had lots of other choices.

      There does not seem to be any rhyme or reason with the naming convention of Astutes. Or is there?

      Astute.
      Ambush.
      Artful.
      Audacious.
      Agamenmon
      Agincourt
      I forget the other name!?

    • Honestly thinking of start a portion to have a ship named HMS Mers-el-Kébir to piss Jas off.

      Honestly though your argument has no bearing. Agincourt is one of our greatest victories of course it should be celebrated.

      I suppose under your reasoning we shouldn’t be calling the carriers Queen Elizabeth or Prince of Wales because it might offend some of our WW2 foes? If an entire nation is offended by us naming our ships after a battle that took place 800 years ago then we shouldn’t be caring for their opinion anyway because clearly they are all children.

    • It’s nothing new, we have a whole class of Trafalgar SSN’s.

      The WW1 HMS Agincourt has a very interesting history, built for Brazil, sold to Turkey and seized back by us when Turkey entered on the German side.

  3. HMS “Not Appearing in this Movie…. HMS Wafer Thin Mint…. HMS English KKKKNNIGGGHITS… or…

    Very Sorry – Don’t know what got into me…

  4. I quite like Hms Astound personally. Either that or Hms ‘Ard is nails. But Agincourt is fine, it’s playful.
    I think for names, destroyers should sound hard, frigates plucky and feisty, submarines futile – like Hms doom or dread. Carriers stoic and regal like Ark Royal. Leave the softer or historical names for the less fights ships.

  5. Brilliant news another waste of tax payers money which could have be better spent on the NHS also infrastructure like our crumbling road network . The list is endless what that money could have been spent on .Instead of living in the real world pretending that UK is a major power which its not anymore .

    • Ahh the ever so cost efficient and value for money NHS…here is 100million extra for the budget ….Great! we can buy everyone we employ a pencil.

  6. Just for fun i’ll throw my hat into the ring,to revive a name from recent history how about HMS Arrow.

    • I’d personally like that for the T31 – honour some of the ships that served in the Falklands.

      HMS Arrow, HMS Antelope, HMS Ardent, HMS Alacrity, HMS Avenger.

      • And they were light speced like the T31s I believe?

        Main gun. Exocet. Sea Cat aft above hanger.
        Aluminium built?

        Excellent this idea wins my vote. All good names too.

      • Lusty – yes id go with that,there were some suggestions that the Type31’s could follow the Leander line of names but the Type 21 names would be more suitable as Daniele suggests- its just a shame today there is so many good names to honour and so few ships to name !.

        • Indeed!

          I mean, if a ‘batch two’ of T31’s were ordered, I’d like to see them follow the ‘B’ names:
          Brilliant, Brazen, Broadsword, Battleaxe, Bloodhound – but I think I’m a little ahead of myself there¬

  7. Most of these boats were named after the “A” Boats from ‘50’s & ‘60’s.
    Agincourt D86 was a Destroyer from the same era. Wots the fuss about?

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