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Tridente-class submarine
Chegada do submarino NRP Tridente à Base Naval do Alfeite.jpg
NRP Tridente at the Lisbon Naval Base
Class overview
Builders: HDW
Operators:  Portuguese Navy
Preceded by: Albacora class submarines
Building: o
Planned: 3
Completed: 2
Cancelled: 1
General characteristics
Type: Attack submarine (SSK)
Displacement: 1,700 tons (surfaced)
2,020 tons (submerged)
Length: 67.7 m (222 ft)
Beam: 6.35 m (21 ft)
Draught: 6.6 m (22 ft)
Propulsion: Diesel-electric, fuel cell AIP, low noise skew back propeller
Speed: 20 knots (37 km/h) submerged
10 knots (19 km/h) surfaced
6 knots (11 km/h) AIP system
Range: 12,000 nautical miles (22,000 km)} at 8 knots (15 km/h)
Endurance: 60 days
Test depth: superior to 300 m (984 ft)
Capacity: 14 Marines
Complement: 7 Officers
10 Petty-officers
16 Enlisted
Sensors and
processing systems:
Kelvin Hughes KH-1007 (F) navigation radar
Atlas Elektronik GmbH ISUS 90 combat management system
Armament: (8) 533 mm torpedo tubes, (4) subharpoon-capable
12 x Alenia Marconi Systems IF-21 Blackshark torpedo reloads

The Tridente class, also designated as U 209PN, is a diesel-electric submarine class based on the Type 214 submarine developed by Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft GmbH (HDW) for the Portuguese Navy.

This class of submarines was acquired by Portugal to replace the last submarines of the Albacora class, then being operated by the navy. Originally, HDW proposed the Type 209 submarine (U-209) during the competition, but decided to later enter a new proposal based on the Type 214. It is for this reason that the Tridente class is commonly designated as the U 209PN.

The class and its ships are the first to not be named after marine animals, thus breaking a tradition retracing back to 1913, when the first submarine entered service with the Portuguese Navy.


The Tridente class submarine is wrongly classed in the "diesel-electric" class. Its propulsion is exclusively electric, with electric motors powered by batteries. These batteries may be charged while submerged by "fuel-cells" (inverse electrolysis) for which, this submarine carries a huge supply of liquid oxygen and hydrogen. Also, and solely as a 2nd solution for recharging the batteries, this submarine carries 2 powerful diesel electric generators (1.000 KVA) for use only when surfaced, or at "snorkel" depth .

Submerged, from Lisbon, this submarine may reach the Cape of Good Hope and return, in 15 days.

Pennant Name Laid down Commissioned
S160 NRP Tridente 2005 May 2010
S161 NRP Arpão 2005 December 2010

Image gallery

See also

External links

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