The Italian Navy’s program to build two next-generation Type 212 submarines met a new milestone on February 15 as it passed the critical design review (CDR).
The CDR represents the formal assessment of the system’s final design as outlined in product specifications for each configuration items. “The CDR has demonstrated that the design is mature and fully compliant to mission performance requirements,” the Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR) said in a release.
The milestone was achieved after Italy began work on the first of two U212NFS (Near Future Submarines) in January last year.
The NFS submarines are upgraded variants of the four Type 212 air-independent propulsion (AIP) already in service with the Marina Militare.
The first four boats were delivered in cooperation with Germany’s thyssenkrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) between 2006 and 2017, while the two NFS boats are scheduled for delivery between 2027 and 2029.
Italy also has the option to buy two more NFS boats, after placing an order for the first two units under a 1.35 billion euro deal from February 2021.
Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri says the new submarines will be “highly innovative, with significant design modifications,” which will all be developed independently by Fincantieri.
The submarines are set to incorporate more technology from the Italian defense industry, with Leonardo already having received a 150 million euro contract to provide a new combat management system (CMS) for the two boats. In addition to the CMS, Leonardo will also provide a simulation and training laboratory at the Italian Navy’s Submarine Centre in Taranto and a package of logistic support including staff training and a set of spare parts.
U212 NFS will also be fitted for the deployment of long-range deep strike cruise missiles and Leonardo’s Black Shark advanced heavyweight torpedoes. These systems will also offer the ability of being retrofitted to the previous boats.