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Singapore receives second Archer-class submarine


RSS Swordsman, berthed at the Changi Naval Base, during its homecoming ceremony. A Singapore Navy photo

SINGAPORE (BNS): The Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) has received the second Archer-class submarine, RSS Swordsman, from Sweden.

The new diesel-electric submarine arrived at the Changi Naval Base on December 31 in the presence of Chief of Navy, Rear-Admiral Ng Chee Peng, and other senior naval officials.

RSS Swordsman was launched at the Kockums Shipyard in Karlskrona, Sweden on October 20, 2010.

The first submarine of the class, RSS Archer, was commissioned into service in December 2011.

Originally launched as Vastergotland-class submarines for the Swedish Navy in 1986 and 1987, the two submarines were sold to Singapore in November 2005 and were later relaunched as RSS Archer and RSS Swordsman.

The ships have been comprehensively upgraded, refurbished and tropicalised to ensure their suitability for operations in local conditions.

Modifications on the subs include insertion of new hull section with air independent propulsion (AIP) system, and new climate control system for use in tropical waters. The submarines will have longer submerged endurance and lower noise signature, thereby enhancing their stealth capability and operational reach considerably, according to the Kockums Shipyard.

Equipped with advanced sonar system, the submarines are able to detect contacts at a farther distance; the torpedo system aboard also has a better target acquisition capability, allowing the submarines the ability to engage contacts at a farther range.

RSS Swordsman will join 171 Squadron, under the RSN's Fleet Command, to enhance the RSN's capability in securing the seaward defence of Singapore and protect its vital sea lines of communication, the Navy said.

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