French Agosta-70 submarine Ouessant at Brest in 2005
|Preceded by:||Daphné class|
|In commission:||1977 – Active in service in Spain and Pakistan|
|Beam:||6 m (19 ft 8 in)|
|Range:||8,500 miles (13,679 km)|
|Sensors and |
The Agosta-class submarine is a class of diesel-electric fast-attack submarine developed and constructed by the French DCNS in 1970s to succeed the Daphné submarines. The submarines have served in the French Navy as well as exported to the navies of Spain and Pakistan. They are currently in the active service with the navies of Spain and Pakistan, and were replaced by the Scorpène class submarines in the French Navy. The French Navy grouped this model of submarine in their most capable class as an océanique, meaning "ocean-going."
built by Arsenal de Cherbourg
- Agosta (S 620) – completed 1977 – decommissioned 1997
- Bévéziers (S 621) – completed 1977 – decommissioned 1998
- La Praya (S 622) – completed 1978 – decommissioned 2000
- Ouessant (S 623) – completed 1978 – decommissioned 2001
built by Cartagena dockyard
- Galerna (S 71) – completed 1983 – in service
- Siroco (S 72) – completed 1983 – decommissioned 2012
- Mistral (S 73) – completed 1985 – in service
- Tramontana (S 74) – completed 1985 – in service
- PNS/M Hashmat (S135) – completed in 1979, originally named Astrant
- PNS/M Hurmat (S136) – completed in 1980, originally named Adventurous
On 10 September 1974, South Africa announced to expand its submarine arm by entering in defence talks with France to acquire the Agosta-70-class submarines.:113 South African Prime Minister P. W. Botha engaged in discussion with acquiring two Agosta-70-class submarines with French President Valéry d'Estaing, and had Capt. L. J. Woodburne as the project-manager of acquisition of Agosta-70 program in South African Navy. Dubigeon-Normandie, the French contractor, built two Agosta-70 class submarine. However, France denied to order of delivery to South African Navy following the implementation of Resolution 418 (an arms embargo) by the United Nations.
In 1983-85, the class of submarines were deployed in Arabian sea during and prevented the Indian actions in seaborne theatre. As part of the cold war operation, they were deployed in Arabian sea and later embarked on being deployed on long-range mission to test depth and submerged endurance in Indian ocean.
The Agosta–90B class submarines is an improved version with modern systems, better battery with longer endurance, deeper diving capability, lower acoustic cavitation and better automatic control (reducing crew from 54 to 36). It can be equipped with the MESMA air-independent propulsion (AIP) system. It is capable of carrying a combined load up to 16 torpedoes, SM39 Exocet, and seaborne nuclear cruise missiles.
The submarines were built through the technology transfer by France to Pakistan that resulted in complicated and lengthy negotiations between the Benazir Bhutto government and the Mitterrand administration in 1992, and signed with the Chirac administration in 1992. The Agosta–90Bs were chosen over the British Upholder/Victoria-class and the project was initially aimed at $520 million but the programme of technology transfer costed $950 million, for which France first provided loans that were paid in five to six years. In 2000, France gave Pakistan the licence to offer commercial production of the submarines to potential customers.
The SM39 was test-fired from a Khalid-class submarine in 2001.
- PNS/M Khalid (S137) – built in France by DCN Cherbourg, completed in 1999
- PNS/M Saad (S138) – built in Pakistan with French assistance, completed in 2002
- PNS/M Hamza (S139) – built in Pakistan with French assistance, commissioned 14 August 2006
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