Sea Platforms

TKMS begins work on Singapore’s third and fourth Type 218SG submarines

16 January 2018
A computer-generated cross section image of the Type 218SG. Source: Ministry of Defence, Singapore

Key Points

  • Work on Singapore’s third and fourth Type 218SG submarines has commenced
  • The Republic of Singapore Navy is on track to receive the first boat in 2021

German shipbuilder ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) has begun work on the Republic of Singapore Navy’s (RSN’s) third and fourth Type 218SG air-independent propulsion (AIP)-equipped submarines.

A steel-cutting ceremony for the boats was held on 12 January in Germany, Singapore’s Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) announced three days after.

MINDEF first disclosed in May 2017 that it had acquired two more boats in addition to an earlier pair of Type 218SGs contracted with the same shipbuilder in 2013. The first two submarines underwent steel cutting in 2015, and are currently scheduled for delivery in 2021 and 2022 respectively. The third and fourth hulls are expected to be handed over from 2024 onwards.

“The Type 218SG submarines will have longer endurance, better sensors, and pack a greater punch as well as other state-of-the-art capabilities – all designed to achieve higher combat effectiveness in our unique operating environment,” said MINDEF in a statement issued on 15 January.

Neither the ministry nor the RSN has given further details of the platform beyond this description, but according to a model of the Type 218SG displayed by TKMS at the 2015 and 2017 iterations of the IMDEX naval exhibition, the boat will have a perpendicular length of about 70 m, a pressure hull diameter of about 6.3 m, and will displace approximately 2,000 tonnes when surfaced.

Deriving its design from the Type 214 while incorporating features from the Type 212A, the Type 218SG will feature an X-rudder stern configuration, which improves the platform’s manoeuvrability in shallow waters, as opposed to boats with cruciform tails.

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