Friday, November 04, 2005
The South African Navy took delivery in Germany on Thursday of the first of its three new, German-built diesel-electric submarines. The 62-metre vessel, the S 101, is expected to be sailed by its own crew to South Africa once training is completed in Germany.
Type 209 SubmarineThe submarine, packed with advanced equipment, is a Type 209, of which 63 are currently in service with various navies around the world. It requires a crew of 30 and South Africa aims to have a racial balance on board reflecting that within its society. South Africa placed the order in 2000 with a consortium of three German companies, HDW, Nordseewerken Emden and MAN Ferrostaal. It was part of a major modernisation package for the navy including the retirement of its previous fleet of Daphne submarines two years ago. Defence Minister Mosioua Lekota travelled to Kiel, the northern German port city where the S 101 was built, for the handover. The HDW dockyard in the city is now owned by ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems of Germany, which described the "209 1400 mod", to give the type its full designation, as the world's most exported diesel-electric submarine. The South African Navy said earlier that most crew would train in Germany, but in addition, 20 oficers were undergoing submarine combat and engineering training in India.