Unbuilt Kockums Submarines: Early Type 471 (Collins Class) Proposals

Abraham Gubler

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TinWing said:
Nearly a decade later, the design was offered to Australia, where it was apparently the preferred bid, losing only to a far less developed Kockums proposal.

The IKL/HDW T.2000 was rated the highest on the initial tender submission but it would be wrong to say it was more developed than the winning Kockums T.471. For example the T.2000 would have needed more modification to carry the US technology Rockwell combat system than the T.471. The T.471 also had a lot more battery power and discretion which was a key consideration for the long range, tropical waters requirement. The real difference between the bids was the engineering capability IKL and HDW held in building and transferring submarine technology compared to Kockums. Balancing that and ultimately winning it for Kockums was their more advanced and modular building technology.
 

TinWing

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Re: Unbuilt Kockums Submarines and Early Type 471 (Collins Class) Proposals

Abraham Gubler said:
TinWing said:
Nearly a decade later, the design was offered to Australia, where it was apparently the preferred bid, losing only to a far less developed Kockums proposal.

The IKL/HDW T.2000 was rated the highest on the initial tender submission but it would be wrong to say it was more developed than the winning Kockums T.471. For example the T.2000 would have needed more modification to carry the US technology Rockwell combat system than the T.471. The T.471 also had a lot more battery power and discretion which was a key consideration for the long range, tropical waters requirement. The real difference between the bids was the engineering capability IKL and HDW held in building and transferring submarine technology compared to Kockums. Balancing that and ultimately winning it for Kockums was their more advanced and modular building technology.

There were a number of irregularities in the selection process, with accusations of influence being directed first at a certain German bidder, and finally, anecdotes about Saab automobiles in the driveways of certain officials.

What is remains clear is that Australia's insistence on a high-end "combat control system" was based on a non-existent Soviet threat. Vladivostok is a very long way from Darwin. Just as significantly, the Soviet presence in the former USN base at Cam Rahn Bay never developed into a major threat. It's also worth remembering that at this point that Indonesia had been pro-Western since 1965 (and only possessed two Type 209 submarines) and China was most decidedly an ally against the Soviets. The requirement for high end CCS didn't even make sense against the backdrop of recent RN experience in the Falklands.

In the end, the RAN wrote a very lofty requirement and Kockums answered with the least developed paper design. In hindsight, Kockums had absolutely no experience in export orders, other than an unsuccessful bid to India, and the Type 471 had very little commonality with any of small Baltic submarines in Swedish service. However, the Kockums bid did answer the requirement, and in the end, the requirement was the problem.
 

Abraham Gubler

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Re: Unbuilt Kockums Submarines and Early Type 471 (Collins Class) Proposals

First of all why has this been split away from the IKL Type 2000 thread? I wasn’t posting design data about Kockums boats just responding with more data to correct an incorrect opinion.

Abraham Gubler said:
The IKL/HDW T.2000 was rated the highest on the initial tender submission but it would be wrong to say it was more developed than the winning Kockums T.471. For example the T.2000 would have needed more modification to carry the US technology Rockwell combat system than the T.471. The T.471 also had a lot more battery power and discretion which was a key consideration for the long range, tropical waters requirement. The real difference between the bids was the engineering capability IKL and HDW held in building and transferring submarine technology compared to Kockums. Balancing that and ultimately winning it for Kockums was their more advanced and modular building technology.

TinWing said:
What is remains clear is that Australia's insistence on a high-end "combat control system" was based on a non-existent Soviet threat. Vladivostok is a very long way from Darwin. Just as significantly, the Soviet presence in the former USN base at Cam Rahn Bay never developed into a major threat. It's also worth remembering that at this point that Indonesia had been pro-Western since 1965 (and only possessed two Type 209 submarines) and China was most decidedly an ally against the Soviets. The requirement for high end CCS didn't even make sense against the backdrop of recent RN experience in the Falklands.

In the end, the RAN wrote a very lofty requirement and Kockums answered with the least developed paper design. In hindsight, Kockums had absolutely no experience in export orders, other than an unsuccessful bid to India, and the Type 471 had very little commonality with any of small Baltic submarines in Swedish service. However, the Kockums bid did answer the requirement, and in the end, the requirement was the problem.

Secondly this is grossly wrong and a complete misunderstanding of Australia’s submarine requirement. The need for high capability combat systems is because of the complexity of the underwater environment faced by RAN submarines from the Seas of Arabia to Japan. To reduce this down to some Soviet Union or Indonesia as a threat argument shows a very thin and wrong understanding of Australia’s defence strategy.

Also the need for such a combat system because of the assessment that ASW technology within the South, SE and East Asian was rapidly growing has been more than proven by events. You don’t start building a submarine in the 1980s for the threat of the late 1970s but what you predict to face in the 2000s and 2010s.

You didn’t need hindsight to know that Kockums had little experience in export, it was clearly visible. Kockums was not a perfect partner but they offered the most advanced build technology and much of the new Submarine’s political support came via support for domestic industry building. Arguably the benefit from technology transfer from choosing Kockums outweighs those problems arising from their weakness as an export partner.
 

Grey Havoc

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From the Collins Class article at Wikipedia (as of 5th September 2011):

Requests for tenders

The development of the submarine commenced in May 1983, when the government released a request for tender and approached seven of the world's nine diesel-electric submarine manufacturers for submissions.[7][8] The submissions would be narrowed down to two based on the provided information, with these undergoing a funded study to determine the winning design.[8] Tendering companies had to demonstrate how Australian industries would be incorporated into the project, and that they were willing to establish an Australia-based consortium to construct the submarines.[8] All seven companies responded by the end of the year: the combined submissions totalling four tonnes (9,000 lb) of paper.[9][10]

  • Directions Techniques Des Constructions Naval of France originally supplied a design modified from the Agosta class, but the submission review board did not view this favourably, as the submarine was of the same vintage as the Oberons.[11] Their submission was altered to a conventionally powered version of the Rubis-class nuclear submarine.[11]
  • The German companies Ingenieur Kontor Lübeck (IKL) and Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft (HDW) collaborated to offer an enlarged version of the Type 209 submarine, designated the Type 2000.[12] Submarines based on the Type 209 design had been exported to several nations, but were not operated by the German Navy.[12]
  • Thyssen Nordseewerke, another German company, offered their TR-1700 class submarine.[12] Like the Type 209, the TR-1700 was an export-only submarine design.[12]
  • Cantieri Navali Riuniti of Italy proposed a design based on their Sauro-class submarine, scaled up by 25%.[12] The age of the early 1970s design was a concern, and the proposal was withdrawn early in the process.[13]
  • The Dutch partnership of United Shipbuilder Bureaux and Rotterdamsche Droogdok Maatschappij submitted the Walrus class.[12] Their offer was identical to that constructed for the Royal Netherlands Navy, minus the Dutch combat system.[14]
  • Swedish shipbuilder Kockums submitted the Type 471 design, an enlarged version of the Västergötland-class submarine operated by the Swedish Navy.[15]
  • The United Kingdom company Vickers Shipbuilding & Engineering offered a design referred to as the Type 2400, that later became the Upholder class.[16]



The review board concluded that the IKL/HDW Type 2000 was the best design offered, the Walrus class was rated as 'fair', while Kockums' and Vickers' proposals were considered 'marginal' contenders.[17] However, none of the tenders completely matched the desired RAN specifications, and the two proposals selected would have to be redesigned during the funded study.[18]

The Combat Data System was procured separately to the submarine design; fourteen companies were identified as capable of providing what the RAN wanted, from which eight were approached in January 1983 with a separate request for tender.[7][8] Five responded: a consortium led by Rockwell International of the United States, Plessey of the United Kingdom, Signaal of the Netherlands, Sintra Alcatel of France, and a collaboration between the German Krupp Atlas Elektronik and the British Ferranti.[19] Each tender was required to offer a system with a distributed architecture, despite the absence of an accepted definition for 'distributed computing' at that time, and had to show the cost of programming the software in Ada, although they could offer additional cost breakdowns for other programming languages.[19]


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collins_class_submarine
 

Volkodav

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Derek Woolner wrote a book on the project after he authored this report that has even more information in it. Sadly the "improvements" to procurement resulted in a highly flawed two pass systems that would compete a notional preferred evolved design (usually the highest risk option that met all requirements) against a preferred existing design (perceived low risk but lacking in growth and capability), which automatically eliminated every less risky evolved and every modified existing design that could satisfy most of the requirements at acceptable risk. i.e. the process guaranteed the sweet spot option was eliminated well before final selection.
 

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