Ships / Submarines / Collins class

Collins class

General Facts

  • TYPE
    Diesel-electric attack submarine


    Type 471 class (design designation)

    1983 - 1990

    Kockums (Sweden)

    1990 - 2003

    Australia - Australian Submarine Corporation

    6 built, all remain in service.

    Program cost for all six submarines was 5 billion Australian Dollar in 2006.

    Very silent at low speeds
    Powerful armament
    High level of automation
    Noise problems in the design
    Poor combat data system before 2006


The Collins class is an attack submarine of Australian origin. It was designed in the 1980's by the Swedish firm Kockums and built in the 1990's in Australia. The Collins class is the largest diesel electric submarine in the world. Due to a high level of automation the crew is rather small for its size. The class was plagued by various deficiensies which have all been corrected by the year 2010.


The Collins is an enlarged version of the Vastergotland class diesel-electric submarine. The layout is conventional with the armament and sonar in the bow, the crew and command compartments in the middle and below the sail. The engines are located at the rear and power a single shaft with seven blade propeller. Since the design was altered several times without new tests the Collins was rather noisy before a new propeller was installed and fiberglass parts were use streamline the design. The outer hull is lined with anechoic tiles to further reduce the noise level.


The Collins class has six 533mm torpedo tubes for which 22 weapons are carried. The weapon mix consists of the Mk 48 torpedo and the Sub Harpoon anti-ship missile. The torpedo tubes may also be used to lay mines which can be carried instead of torpedoes. The use of the Mk 48 torpedo makes the Collins a potent weapon for use against surface vessels and other submarines.


The Collins class is fitted with a bow mounted Scylla passive/active sonar and within the class three types of towed array passive sonar systems are employed. The original combat data system never funtioned well and was replaced by the Raytheon CSS Mk 2 which is based on the AN-BYG-1 that is used in the US Los Angeles class.


A diesel-electric propulsion system powers the Collins class. Three diesel engines charge the batteries and provide propulsion while surfaced or snorting. While submerged an electric motor is used for propulsion. The maximum speed is 10 knots when surfaced and 20 knots submerged. The range is 11.500 nm at 10 knots. The maximum diving depth is 300 m.


The Collins class is only used by Australia. Six ships have been built and are to remain in service until at least the year 2025.


Collins class

The Collins class attack sub marine is the largest diesel-electric submarine in the world. The design is an enlarged version of the proven Swedish Vastergotland design. The Collins class can be identified by being larger and having a larger sensor mast on the front bow.

TypeAttack submarine
Crew45 incl 8 officers
Displacement3.051 t surfaced, 3.353 t submerged
Length77.8 m
Width7.8 m
Draught7 m
Machinery3x Type V18B14 diesel, 6.020 hp
3x Jeumont Schneider generator, 4.2 MW
1x Jeumont Schneider motor, 7.344 hp
Propulsion1 shaft, 7 blade propeller
Speed10 kt surfaced, 10 kt snorting, 20 kt dived
Range9.000 nm at 10 kt snorting
11.500 nm at 10 kt surfaced
400 kt at 4 kt submerged
SensorsSonar: Scylla active/passive bow array
Sonar: Kariwara or Narama or TB 23 passive towed arrary
Radar: Hughes Type 1007
SystemsCSS Mk 2 (AN-BYG-1) combat data system
Link 11
CountermeasuresDecoys: 2x SSE ESM: CS-5600
Remarks300 m diving depth
Weapons6x 533mm torpedo tube
Mix of 22 weapons
Weapon1Mk 48 Mod 4 or Mod 7 torpedo
Weapon2UGM-84C Sub Harpoon


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