Nuclear Submarine to be inducted in Pakistan’s navy by 2015: New-gen submarines: Pakistan steals a march on India

Pakistan Submarine Capabilities

  • Hangor (Daphne) SubmarineHangor (Daphne) Submarine
  • Hashmat (Agosta 70) SubmarineHashmat (Agosta 70) Submarine
  • Khalid (Agosta 90B) SubmarineKhalid (Agosta 90B) Submarine
 
 

The Pakistan Navy operates a fleet of five diesel-electric submarines and three MG110 miniature submarines (SSI).[1] Although these vessels are currently based at Karachi, it is possible that in the future some may also be based at Port Ormara.[2] The nucleus of the fleet comprises two Agosta-70 boats and three modern Agosta-90B submarines, all of Frenchdesign. Pakistan’s third Agosta-90B, the S 139 Hamza, was constructed indigenously and features the DCNS MESMA (Module d’EnergieSous-Marin Autonome) air-independent propulsion system (AIP). The two earlier Agosta-90B vessels will be retrofitted with the MESMA AIP propulsion system during their next major overhaul. [21]

Submarine Tables for Pakistan
 

The Agosta-90B Hamza (Khalid-class) was constructed at the Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works (KSEW).[3] Pakistani officials and media outlets extolled the accomplishment, treating the indigenous submarine’s 26 September 2008 commissioning as a significant step in the enhancement of the country’s naval capabilities vis-à-vis India.[4,5,6] It is the first conventional submarine in the Indian Ocean to feature the AIP system (in this case a 200KW liquid oxygen MESMA AIP), which allows the vessel to increase its submerged endurance for up to 3 weeks and improves its stealth characteristics.[13, 15, 16]

During the 1971 war between India and Pakistan, India effectively blockaded the port of Karachi, Pakistan’s only major harbor. In response, Islamabad was able to curtail India’s naval supremacy only through the use of its submarine force, which sank one Indian frigate.[7] Drawing on these experiences and the perceived threat posed by a larger Indian Navy, Pakistan has been continuously investing in its submarine force, within the constraints posed by its economy.

An effective sea-denial capability is vital to Pakistan. Foreign trade is increasingly important to the country’s economy, best illustrated by a trade to GDP ratio of 36.0 percent in 2007-2008.[8] Given that over 95 percent of this trade is seaborne, the Pakistan Navy and its submarine fleet is charged with protecting the country’s sea lanes of communication (SLOC).

Developments in India’s naval infrastructure and force posture significantly inform Pakistan’s own naval planning. In February 2001, the Pakistan Navy publicly considered the deployment of nuclear weapons aboard its submarines, arguing that it had to keep pace with developments in India.[9] Islamabad later rescinded its statement in January 2003, reaffirming Pakistan’s commitment to a “minimum credible deterrence.”[10] However, in the wake of India’s short-range Agni-I test that month, then Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Shahid Karimullah left the option open, saying that while the country had no plans to deploy nuclear weapons on their submarines, they would do so only if “forced to.”[11,12] But most experts agree that Pakistan is, at the very least, attempting to develop a sea-based version of the indigenously built nuclear capable ground-launched cruise missile ‘Babur’. [13] This missile is similar in design to the American Tomahawk and Russian KH-55 cruise missiles.[14]

In an attempt to further improve its naval capabilities, Pakistan has also been negotiating with Germany’s ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) about the possible acquisition of three diesel-electric Type 214 submarines equipped with an AIP system based on fuel cell technology. Discussions regarding the deal have been taking place since 2004, but due to political developments in Pakistan as well as Germany, it has been repeatedly delayed. [17] In November 2009, the German Ambassador to Pakistan announced that a final decision would be made soon. [18] Parallel to the negotiations with TKMS, France has also been attempting to sell its Scorpene-class submarines to Pakistan. [19, 20]

Sources:
[1] “Chapter Seven: Central and South Asia Caribbean and Latin America”, The Military Balance 2009, International Institute of Strategic Studies, Routledge, 2009.
[2] Interview with Vice Adm. Clees van Duyvendijk, Commander in Chief RNN, “Navy Chiefs of Staff on MCM and minelaying,” Naval Forces, 2001, Vol. 22, No. 3, pp. 62-68; in ProQuest Information and Learning Company, http://proquest.umi.com.
[3] The Royal Institute of Naval Architects, Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works retrieved on 28 January 2010 from www.rina.org.uk.
[4] “Pakistan navy inducts new submarine”, Associated Press of Pakistan, 27 September 2008; in Lexis-Nexis Academic Universe, http://web.lexis-nexis.com.
[5] “India submarine ‘threatens peace’”, BBC News, 28 July 2009, http://news.bbc.co.uk.
[6] “Pakistan on verge of selecting HDW submarine”, Jane’s Defence Weekly, 2 December 2008, www.janes.com.
[7] “Bangladeshi War of Independence: Indo-Pakistani War of 1971″, GlobalSecurity.Org, www.globalsecurity.org.
[8] “Economic Survey 2008-2009″, Ministry of Finance, Government of Pakistan, www.finance.gov.pk.
[9] “Pakistan may install nuclear missiles on its subs”, Los Angeles Times, 23 February 2001, www.latimes.com.
[10] “Pakistan to retain minimum nuclear deterrence, PM says”, The News, 07 January 2003; in Lexis-Nexis, http://web.lexis-nexis.com.
[11] Catherine Philp, “India stokes the fires with new missile test”, The Times, 10 January 2003, www.timesonline.co.uk.
[12] “Pakistan navy chief denies plan to equip submarines with nuclear warheads”, The News, 26 January 2003; in Lexis-Nexis, http://web.lexis-nexis.com.
[13] Feroz Hassan Khan, Pakistan’s Perspective on the Global Elimination of Nuclear Weapons,Report prepared for the Henry L. Stimson Center, April 2009.
[14] Ottfried Nassauer, Deutsche U-Boote fuer Pakistan: Fakten und Gedanken zu einem problematischen Exportvorhaben, Berliner Zentrum fuer Transatlantische Sicherheit, Research Note 8.1 (December 2008).
[15] “Agosta Class,” Jane’s Underwater warfare Systems, 25 September 2009.
[16] “MESMA,” Direction des Constructions Navales Services, September 2008, www.dcnsgroup.com.
[17] Ottfried Nassauer, Deutsche U-Boote fuer Pakistan: Fakten und Gedanken zu einem problematischen Exportvorhaben, Berliner Zentrum fuer Transatlantische Sicherheit, Research Note 8.1 (December 2008).
[18] “German Parliament discussing approval for submarines,” Business Recorder, 11 November 2009.
[19] “U-Boot Deal auf der Kippe,” Der Spiegel, 30 April 2007.
[20] “Poker mit Pakistanern,” Der Spiegel, 13 July 2009.
[21] “Pakistan Submarine Forces,” Jane’s Underwater Warfare Systems, 25 September 2009, www.janes.com.

 

New-gen submarines: Pakistan steals a march on India 
The Tribune, India ^ | January 20,2011 | Ajay Banerjee 

Posted on January 22, 2011 8:39:37 PM MST by sukhoi-30mki

New-gen submarines: Pakistan steals a march on India

Signs deal with China to co-produce six subs with the technology that India wants

These could tilt balance in favour of the Pak Navy in Arabian Sea

Ajay Banerjee/TNS

New Delhi, January 20 Even as India has announced its intent to have new generation diesel-electric submarines, Pakistan has gone ahead and signed a deal with long-standing ally China to produce submarines with the same technology that India wants.

The Pakistan Navy and China’s Ship Building Corporation signed a deal that got the seal of finality during the visit of Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao to Pakistan last December. Indian security agencies in know of the matter have cautioned the government that this could tilt the balance in favour of the Pakistan Navy in the Arabian Sea.

India is looking to spend Rs 50,000 crore to acquire six new diesel-electric submarines that will be equipped with air-independent propulsion (AIP) technology to boost operational capabilities. Conventional diesel-electric submarines have to surface every couple of days for oxygen to recharge their batteries. A submarine using AIP technology can stay submerged for 12-15 days at a stretch, thus increasing its capacity to hunt down enemy warships without being detected. Nuclear powered submarines can stay underwater for even longer periods.

Under the latest agreement, China will co-produce six AIP technology submarines with Pakistan. Currently, the neighbouring navy has only one submarine — PNS Hamza. Pakistan is also looking at an AIP system produced by a French or German maker to fit on to the Chinese made hull of the vessel, said an official.

What is worrying for India is the known pace of Chinese construction. China could well provide three-four new generation AIP technology submarines to the neigbouring country within two years. The Chinese had supplied four frigates to the Pakistan Navy in 18 months flat! The two nations have also co-produced the single-engine J-17 fighter that was inducted into the Pakistan Air Force last summer.

For India, it could take upto five years to induct its first such submarine, as it will have to go through the process of trying out offers from various global bidders before ordering the vessels.

The Indian Navy has a bigger fleet in terms of number but it is dwindling and will be down to eight conventional diesel-electric vessels by 2015. By then, the first of the six under-construction Scorpene submarines will join the fleet followed by five more till 2018. The AIP technology vessels will follow later. Going by estimates, Pakistan would complete the induction of its fleet of AIP technology vessels by the time India starts off with its line of such submarines.

However, India will maintain its edge over Pakistan in case of nuclear-powered submarines. It hopes to induct the Akula-II Class attack submarine K-152 Nerpa on a 10-year lease from Russia in the next few weeks while the first indigenous nuclear submarine INS Arihant is expected to be inducted by early-2012.

Indian Navy Chief Admiral Nirmal Verma has already declared that nuclear-powered submarine INS Arihant would be on ‘deterrent patrol’ to provide the ability of a retaliatory ‘second strike’ if the country faces a nuclear attack.

What Worries India

The Chinese are known for their pace of construction and could provide three-four new generation submarines to Pakistan within two years.

It could take India upto five years to induct the first of its diesel-electric submarine.

The Indian Navy fleet is dwindling and will be down to eight conventional diesel-electric vessels by 2015.


 Additional Reading: Indian Article (Tainted Viewpoint)

Pak plans to acquire 6 submarines from China

PTI

After inducting advance fighter jets from China, Pakistan plans to buy six state-of-the-art submarines from the neighbouring country in a bid to boost its under-sea warfare capabilities.

Islamabad is planning to buy six submarines outright with options of joint development of conventional submarines with China, The Express Tribunereported.

The newspaper did not mention the class of submarines being sought by Pakistan saying merely that Islamabad wanted advanced under-sea vessels with air independent propulsion (AIP) system, which would give them capabilities to stay submerged longer and operate noiselessly.

The Defence Ministry has asked the federal Cabinet to approve the purchase of Chinese submarines to counter “emerging threats” faced by Pakistan, the paper said.

Pakistan has a total of five active diesel electric submarines plus three midget submarines. While the three submarines are of German SSK class, Islamabad had recently inducted two French Agosta class ones.

With attempts to acquire AIP technology, Islamabad would be in race with New Delhi, which plans to arm its French Scorpene submarines with the technology but only by 2013.

Pakistan’s Defence Ministry informed the Cabinet that the country’s Navy is facing a “critical force imbalance” in terms of the number of submarines and ships in its fleet.

The “capability gap is widening exponentially with the passage of time”, the report said.

The Navy plans to acquire the six AIP conventional submarines that can operate in a “multi-threat environment under tropical conditions” and are capable of launching torpedoes and missiles, theBusiness Recorder daily quoted official documents as saying.

A protocol for joint development and co-production of submarines by the Pakistan Navy and China Shipbuilding and Offshore Corporation will be signed shortly after approval by the federal Cabinet, the paper said.

In view of “urgent naval requirements”, the issue of acquiring Chinese submarines was part of the talking points for President Asif Ali Zardari’s visit to China in 2009, media reports said.

The matter was also discussed during Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao’s visit to Pakistan in December 2010, the reports said.

The Cabinet has been told that Naval Headquarters had pursued the purchase of submarines with Chinese authorities, who have assured Pakistan of their “firm support” for the submarine project.

Under the proposed protocol, four submarines will be constructed at a Chinese shipyard and the remaining two in Pakistan.

Co-development and production will include joint development, training of Pakistani personnel, upgrades of Pakistan Navy’s shipyard and other related aspects.

Pakistan is in the process of inducting 36 J-10 fighter aircraft from China in a deal worth more than $1.4 billion, with options open for induction of more similar aircraft.

Islamabad and Beijing are also collaborating to build an advanced fighter — JF-17 or ‘Thunder’.

Be Sociable, Share!

, , , , ,

Comments are closed.

(will not be published)
CAPTCHA Image
*