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Scorpène-class submarine
Scorpene malaisien vue de trois quart arriere 2.jpg
Class overview
Name: Scorpène

Mazagon Dock Limited

Brazilian Navy Shipyard

 Chilean Navy
 Indian Navy
 Royal Malaysian Navy

 Brazilian Navy (planned to 2015)
Preceded by: Agosta-class submarine}
Subclasses: CA-2000
Cost: $450 million
Building: 2
Planned: 19
Completed: 4
Cancelled: 4
Active: 4
General characteristics
Class & type: Scorpène class
Type: submarine
Displacement: 1,565 tonnes (1,725 short tons) (CM-2000)
1,870 tonnes (2,060 short tons) (AM-2000)
2,000 tonnes (2,200 short tons) (S-BR)[1]
Length: 61.7 metres (202 ft) (CM-2000)
70 metres (230 ft) (AM-2000)
75 metres (246 ft) (S-BR)[1]
Beam: 6.2 metres (20 ft)
Draught: 5.4 metres (18 ft)
Draft: 5.8 metres (19 ft)
Propulsion: Diesel-Electric, Batteries, and AIP

20 knots (37 km/h) (submerged)

12 kn (22 km/h) (surfaced)

6,500 nautical miles (12,000 km) at 8 knots (surfaced)

550 nmi (1,020 km) at 5 knots (submerged)
Endurance: 40 days (compact)
50 days (normal)
50+21 days (AIP)
Test depth: >350 metres (1,150 ft) [2]
Complement: 31
Armament: 6 x 533-mm torpedo tubes for 18 Whitehead Alenia Sistemi Subacquei Black Shark heavyweight torpedoes or SM.39 Exocet anti-ship missiles, 30 mines in place of torpedoes

Ships in class include: O'Higgins


The Scorpène class submarines are a class of diesel-electric attack submarine jointly developed by the French DCN and the Spanish company Navantia and now by DCNS. It features diesel propulsion and an additional air-independent propulsion (AIP). The Chilean Navy ordered two Scorpène class, which replaced two Oberon class submarines retired by the Chilean Navy. In 2005 the Indian Navy ordered six Scorpène class; all the Indian boats will be built in India, at Mazagon Dock and elsewhere, and the last two are to be fitted with the indigenous AIP module.[3] For the follow on requirement of six submarines, DCNS plans to offer a larger version of the submarine to the Indian navy.[4] In 2008, the Brazilian Navy ordered four Scorpènes. The Chilean Scorpène class O'Higgins and Carrera were completed in 2005 and 2006, respectively. In 2009, the Royal Malaysian Navy commissioned Tunku Abdul Rahman and Tun Abdul Razak.

Scorpène characteristics

The Scorpène class of ships has four subtypes:[5] the CM-2000 conventional diesel-electric version, the AM-2000 AIP derivative, the downsized CA-2000 coastal submarine and the enlarged S-BR for the Brazilian Navy without AIP.[6]

The Chilean and Malaysian boats are fitted with the TSM 2233 Mk 2 sonar. The class can also be fitted with an 'S-Cube' sonar suite from Thales.[7]

Air-independent propulsion

The French MESMA (Module d'Energie Sous-Marine Autonome) system is being offered by the French shipyard DCN for the Scorpène class submarines. It is essentially a modified version of their nuclear propulsion system with heat being generated by ethanol and oxygen. A conventional steam turbine power plant powered by steam generated from the combustion of ethanol (grain alcohol) and stored oxygen at a pressure of 60 atmospheres. This pressure-firing allows exhaust carbon dioxide to be expelled overboard at any depth without an exhaust compressor.

Each MESMA system costs around $50–60 million. As installed on the Scorpène, it requires adding a new 8.3 meter (27 foot), 305 tonne hull section to the submarine, and results in a submarine able to operate for greater than 21 days underwater, depending on variables like speed.[citation needed]


In 2003 the Spanish government ordered 4 Scorpène-AIP submarines worth €1,756 million. Implying a cost of 439 million Euros each.[8] However the order of 4 Scorpène submarines for the Spanish navy was canceled and four S-80 class submarines have been ordered instead. This has caused conflicts and controversies between DCNS and Navantia as the latter is still involved in the construction of the submarines sold to India, Malaysia and Chile while the S-80 is offered on the export market.[9] As an answer to the competition from the S-80, DCNS designed its own enhanced version of the Scorpène called the Marlin class but little is known about this design and the Scorpène is still offered by France on the export market.

In 2005, India chose the Scorpène design; purchasing six for US$3 billion (US$ 500m per boat).These submarines are to be manufactured under a technology transfer agreement by the state-owned Mazagon Docks in Mumbai and delivered between 2016 and 2021.[10] Construction started on 23 May 2009.[7]

In 2009 Brazil purchased 4 enlarged Scorpènes for US$9.9 billion with a big technology transfer agreement and a second agreement to develop a French/Brazilian nuclear-powered submarine. The hull of the first S-BR (S35) was laid down at Cherbourg on 27 May 2010 and is to be jumboized at Brazilian Navy Shipyard in Sepetiba late 2012.[1] The latter 3 submarines will be entirely built there and are planned to be commissioned in 2018, 2020 and 2021. The nuclear-powered submarine could be a variant of the Scorpène class (which would make it similar in concept to the Rubis-class submarine) or a more powerful Barracuda class one.[11]

On March 1, 2011 the Naval Shipyard Gdynia of Poland and DCNS offered a license to build a yet undisclosed number of modified Scorpène class, and the Scorpène design is competing with that of the German Type 214 submarine.[12]


Pennant no. Name Country Laid down Launched Commissioned Homeport
SS-23 O'Higgins  Chile 18 November 1999 1 November 2003 8 September 2005 Talcahuano
SS-22 Carrera  Chile November 2000 24 November 2004 20 July 2006 Talcahuano
KD Tunku Abdul Rahman  Malaysia 25 April 2004 23 October 2007 January 2009 Sepanggar
KD Tun Abdul Razak  Malaysia 25 April 2005 October 2008 December 2009 Sepanggar
S50  India 1 April 2009 Early 2015 Expected December 2016 Navy Day [13] Visakhapatnam / Mumbai
S51  India October 2011 TBD Expected 2017 Visakhapatnam / Mumbai
S52  India December 2012 TBD Expected 2018 Visakhapatnam / Mumbai
S53  India TBD Expected 2019 Visakhapatnam / Mumbai
S54  India TBD Expected 2020 Visakhapatnam / Mumbai
S55  India TBD Expected September 2021 or March 2022 [14] Visakhapatnam / Mumbai
S40 Riachuelo  Brazil 27 May 2010 Expected in 2014-2015 Sepetiba
S41 Humaitá  Brazil 1 September 2013 Expected in 2016 Sepetiba
S42 Tonelero  Brazil TBD TBD Sepetiba
S43 Angostura  Brazil TBD TBD Sepetiba


See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Nicolas von Kospot (2 June 2010). "First Steel Cut for Brazilian Submarine Programme". Retrieved 7 June 2010. 
  3. DRDO working on cutting submarine vulnerability
  4. France to offer bigger Scorpenes for $5 billion Indian submarine order but Indian not shown interest with [DCNS (company)|DCNS]because project delayed 5 to 6 years this is effected to Indian Navy
  5. "The Market for Submarines". Forecast International. August 2009. Retrieved 13 May 2010. [dead link]
  6. "Novas pistas sobre o ‘S-BR’, o novo submarino convencional Brasileiro". 6 May 2010. Retrieved 13 May 2010. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 [1][dead link]
  8. "Scorpene Basic-AIP". Retrieved 2011-12-28. 
  9. "Scorpène : DCNS et Navantia en instance de divorce". Mer et Marine. Retrieved 2011-12-28. 
  10. "India to buy 6 Scorpene submarines". Retrieved 2011-12-28. 
  11. "Novos submarinos da MB: Senado aprova o empréstimo de 4,32 bilhões de euros | Poder Naval - Marinha de Guerra, Tecnologia Militar Naval e Marinha Mercante". Retrieved 2011-12-28. 
  12. (Polish) Sławomir Sowula (March 2011). "Gdyńska stocznia chce budować okręty podwodne".,100896,9192983,Gdynska_stocznia_chce_budowac_okrety_podwodne.html. Retrieved 2011-03-03. 

External links

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