French Navy's Rubis class nuclear submarine visits Scotland

According to a tweet published by Navy Lookout on December 26, 2022, the French Rubis class nuclear submarine is visiting Scotland, at the naval base of Clyde.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 French Rubis class nuclear submarine Amethyste. (Picture source: US DoD)

The Rubis class is a series of nuclear-powered attack submarines operated by the French Navy. The class comprises six vessels, the first entering service in 1983 and the last in 1993, with another two being canceled.

All six submarines of the Rubis class are based at Toulon and are part of the Escadrille de sous-marins nucléaires d'attaque. Smaller than contemporary designs of other major world navies, the Rubis class shares many of its system designs with the conventionally-powered Agosta class. In the late 1980s, the Rubis class was proposed as an export to Canada in their plan to acquire nuclear-powered submarines.

The submarines of the class were built in two batches, with the final two built to an improved standard to reduce noise emissions that plagued the original design.

Dubbed the AMÉTHYSTE rebuild, the first four hulls were refitted to its standard until they were practically indistinguishable from the final two hulls. Four of the submarines have had significant incidents in their careers and one, Saphir was taken out of service our of service in 2019, followed by Rubis in 2022. The French Navy is replacing the Rubis class with the Suffren-class submarines.

As built the first four submarines of the class measured 72.1 metres (236 ft 7 in) long overall with a beam of 7.6 m (24 ft 11 in) and a draught of 6.4 m (21 ft 0 in).

The Rubis class had a standard displacement of 2,265 tonnes (2,229 long tons), 2,385 t (2,347 long tons) surfaced and 2,670 t (2,630 long tons) submerged.

The boats are of single-hull construction made of 80 HLES high elasticity steel and the forward diving planes are situated high on the conning tower. The Rubis class can dive to depths over 300 m (980 ft).