BAE Systems unveils latest Astute-class HMS Anson submarine for British Navy

According to a press release published on December 11, 2020, BAE Systems has unveiled the latest Astute-class HMS Anson submarine for the British Navy in the Devonshire Dock Hall, the UK’s gigantic submarine construction complex. 
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 More complex than the Space Shuttle, the bow section of HMS Anson submarine is lit up at the naming ceremony. (Picture source BAE Systems)

After nine years of toil by the engineers, shipwrights and technicians of BAE Systems, the latest Astute-class boat was unveiled in the Devonshire Dock Hall – the UK’s gigantic submarine construction complex. The British Royal Navy today welcomed the fifth of its 21st Century hunter-killer submarines: the mighty HMS Anson, formally named in Barrow.

The 97 meter long, 7,400-tonne submarine is due to be launched into the water in Barrow early next year, ahead of leaving for sea trials in 2022.

More than 1,700 people work on the Astute program, which is delivering seven attack submarines to the Royal Navy. Earlier this year, HMS Audacious, the fourth boat in the class, left Barrow for her operational base, at Her Majesty's Naval Base Clyde in Faslane.

Work is also well underway in Barrow on Astute boats six and seven, as well as the first two boats in the Dreadnought class, which is the next generation of nuclear deterrent submarines.

The Astute class is the latest class of advanced nuclear-powered fleet submarines (SSNs) in service with the Royal Navy. The class sets a new standard for the Royal Navy in terms of weapons load, communication facilities, and stealth. 

Advanced nuclear technology means the Astute class submarines never need to be refueled and they can manufacture their own oxygen and freshwater from the ocean, meaning they are able to circumnavigate the world without surfacing. With 98 crew able to monitor world-leading sensors, the Astute-class carries both Tomahawk Land Attack Cruise Missiles (TLAM) and Spearfish heavyweight torpedoes.

The Astute class is the largest and most advanced attack submarines ever built for the Royal Navy. Astute leads the way with many technological 'firsts' - the first Royal Navy Submarine not to be fitted with optical periscopes (instead of high specification video technology is used to scan the horizon) and the class is the quietest ever made.