- Book reviewer
- Submarines, Ship design and development, Book reviews, Naval Technology
- RAN Ships
- HMAS Collins, HMAS Farncomb, HMAS Waller
- December 2008 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
By 2007, Waller had received the new Raytheon combat system, mechanical and noise problems had long been resolved, and by 2010 all six boats will be able to perform to standards which are pre-eminent in non-nuclear submarines.
So far as costs are concerned: ‘Even if all the extra expenditure on improvements is included then the project came in within 20 per cent of the original budget. Few military projects have been as financially successful’. (page 325).
The book’s final chapter provides a fascinating overview of the travails, over-runs and other disasters which have been fairly constant accompaniments to the building of submarines in all countries which have attempted this feat. It is an immensely challenging task, and remains a high risk activity even in countries such as the US and UK with a hundred years of submarine building behind them. This final and salutary overview, more than anything else, points up the nature and scale of the triumph we have achieved in Australia in the production of these fine submarines.