|The U212 submarine is
capable of long distance submerged passage to the area of
operation. The German Navy has ordered four of the
submarines, the first ship will be commissioned in the year
2004. The Type 212 is being constructed by
Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft GmbH (HDW) of Kiel and Thyssen
Nordseewerke GmbH (TNSW) of Enden. HDW is responsible for
the bow sections and TNSW for the stern section. HDW is
assembling the first and third vessels, TNSW the second and
fourth. U31, the first of class, is expected to begin sea
trials in October 2002.
Two U212 submarines are being built
by Fincantieri for the Italian Navy The first is expected to
launch in 2002 and commission in 2005.
The Type 212 is equipped with a
highly integrated Command & Weapons Control System which
interfaces with sensors, weapons and navigation system. The
system is based on a high-performance databus and a
distributed computer system, the Basic Command & Weapons
Control System (Basic CWCS) supplied by Konsberg Defence
& Aerospace of Norway under the trade name MSI-90U.
There are six torpedo tubes in two
groups of three. Type 212 is equipped with a water ram
expulsion system for torpedo launch. The submarine is
equipped with the DM2A4 heavyweight torpedo weapon system
from STN Atlas Elektronik.
The propulsion system combines a
conventional system consisting of a diesel generator with a
lead acid battery, and an air-independent propulsion (AIP)
system, used for silent slow cruising, with a fuel cell
equipped with oxygen and hydrogen storage. The system
consists of nine PEM (polymer electrolyte membrane) fuel
cells, providing between 30 and 50kW each.
For higher speeds, connection is
made to the high-performance lead acid battery. An MTU 16 V-
396 diesel engine powers the generator from Piller GmbH for
charging the battery installed on the lower of the two decks
at the forward section of the submarine. The diesel
generator plant is mounted on a swinging deck platform with
double elastic mounts for noise and vibration isolation. The
propeller motor is directly coupled to the seven-bladed