It can glide through the Deep Six with no more noise than a baby dolphin, thanks to its anti-acoustic tiles.
It’s sonar can detect objects 3,000 nautical miles away, the distance between the English channel and New York City.
And it’s Rolls-Royce nuclear reactor, has a 25-year life, able to recycle air and water, which allows the boat to circumnavigate the globe without surfacing.
Meet HMS Audacious, the Royal Navy’s newest £1.6billion Astute class nuclear-powered submarine, which has been described as the “most capable ever built,” Peter Suciu of The National Interest reported.
As with the other Astute-class boats, the 320-foot long, 7,400 ton HMS Audacious can also deploy Special Boat Service teams — which operate in a manner similar to US Navy SEALS.
Armed with Spearfish torpedoes to deal with enemy subs and warships, Tomahawk cruise missiles can also target land-based threats up to 1,000 miles away, the report said.
The Astute class has a top speed of 30 knots (56km/h; 35m/h) when fully submerged.
The boat set sail this month on her maiden voyage from BEA Systems — which built the new submarine — at Barrow-in-Furness close to her homeport at the Her Magesty’s Naval Base Clyde. Welcoming the vessel were members of the Submarine Flotilla, or SUBFLOT, which is based in Clyde.
“The departure of HMS Audacious from Barrow is a milestone in the Astute-class programme,” said Ian Booth, head of the Submarine Delivery Agency. “The delivery of our incredibly complex submarine programmes depends on the skilled workforce and close collaboration with our industrial partners to deliver a first-class product for the Royal Navy.”
HMS Audacious is the fourth Astute-class sub completed out of a planned seven boats, and its primary role with SUBFLOT will be to assist in combating the increasing threat of Russian incursions in waters near the British Isles, the report said.
The Astute-class is the replacement for the Trafalgar-class fleet submarines that first entered service in the early 1980s. The first three submarines, HMS Astute, HMS Ambush and HMS Artful are in service, while the final three Astute-class are now at various stages of construction at Barrow.
The timetable of the delivery of the final three has been impacted by the coronavirus outbreak in the UK, the rpeort said.
“This is an incredibly difficult time for employees, their families and the community but, as is often the case in times of great adversity, it has been truly humbling to see everyone come together to support the government’s critical defence programmes and help deliver HMS Audacious,” said Cliff Robson, managing director of BAE Systems Submarines.
Lady Jones, Audacious’ sponsor and wife of Admiral Sir Phillip Jones, the First Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Staff, chose the name.