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UK Navy's Astute, Dauntless vessels begin sea trials

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The Royal Navy's Dauntless destroyer and Astute nuke sub begin sea trials. A BAE Systems Photo

LONDON (BNS): The British Royal Navy's two most advanced naval vessels – nuclear attack submarine Astute and Type 45 guided missile destroyer Dauntless – entered the waters of Clyde for sea trials last week.

The Astute-class submarines, designed to replace the Swiftsure and Trafalgar class submarines of the Royal Navy, are larger in size and require fewer crew to operate them. With a water displacement capacity of 7,400 tonnes, the sub incorporates advanced stealth technology along with world class sonar system, greater firepower and latest communication systems.

Astute is designed to carry out a range of key strategic and tactical roles, including anti-ship and anti-submarine operations, surveillance and intelligence gathering and support for land forces.

The submarine arrived at her operational base of Faslane Naval Base on the Clyde from BAE Systems’ Barrow yard in November 2009 and is currently undergoing sea trials ahead of her acceptance into service, the Royal Navy said.

Dauntless, which is the second of the Royal Navy’s Type 45 anti-warfare destroyers, was handed over to the UK Ministry of Defence by BAE Systems in December 2009 and will be commissioned into the Royal Navy fleet later this year.

The Type-45 class guided missile destroyers have been designed primarily to defend a task force from aerial attacks. Besides, they can also carry out an array of roles like humanitarian relief and also intense war fighting.

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