Military Review

Taigei: Japan returns to diesel-electric submarines

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Launching ceremony


On October 14, at the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries shipyard in Kobe, the Taigei submarine was launched. This is the lead ship of the new project 29SS, with which it is planned to replace obsolete submarines in the future. The new project combines modern systems with ideas that were previously considered obsolete.

Code 29SS


According to known data, the technical and technological groundwork for a promising submarine project began to be created in the middle of the two thousandth years. Then, research began on the topic of new radio-electronic, hydroacoustic and computing facilities, as well as experiments in the field of air-independent power plants.

Work on new electronics and other components was successfully completed by the mid-tenths. Not long before that, it was decided to abandon the use of VNEU in favor of a different architecture of the power plant. Research and experiments have shown that a diesel-electric circuit using modern storage batteries will be more efficient and quieter.


In 2015 and 2017 two non-nuclear submarines of the "Soryu" type with a rebuilt power plant were laid. They lost their Stirling engines, but kept the diesel generators and received lithium-ion batteries. To date, the first of these submarines has been tested and confirmed the correctness of the solutions applied.

By 2017-18 the main components of the new ship systems were tested and recommended for use in a full-fledged project. By the beginning of 2018, a project with the code 29SS was prepared, according to which it was planned to build new boats. Recently, the project has been named after the lead ship - "Taigei".

Work in progress


The Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Forces are currently planning to build seven submarines of a new type. There are contracts for four ships, and one of them is nearing completion. Two more orders are still at different stages of construction, their completion is expected in the foreseeable future.

The lead submarine "Taigei" was laid down in March 2018. The launch took place a few days ago, on October 14. Now the boat has to go through all the necessary tests, after which it will be able to join the MSS. Acceptance by the customer is expected in the spring of 2022. Thus, the construction took a lot of time, and the tests will not be quick either, due to the high complexity of the project. In addition, in the near future, "Taigei" is planned to be operated mainly for gaining experience, and not as a full-fledged combat unit.


The new boat is quite expensive. Its construction cost approximately $ 710 million. For comparison, serial Soryu submarines cost less than 490 million, and their diesel-electric modification requires a cost of $ 608 million.

In January 2019, the second submarine was laid down at the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries plant, the name of which remains unknown. They are going to launch it next year and take it into service in 2023. Another submarine was laid down last year - it will be launched after the second and will be handed over in 2024.

The construction schedule for the next four ships is still unknown. It can be assumed that shipbuilders and the military are planning to reach high rates of construction with the annual delivery of finished ships. In this case, the seventh planned submarine will begin service in 2027. However, certain difficulties associated with the complexity of the project may lead to a shift in terms to the right.

Technical features


With its outer contours and layout, the new Taygei diesel-electric submarine is similar to the previous non-nuclear / diesel-electric submarines of the Soryu type, but it has a larger displacement. Fundamental differences are hidden inside the hull and affect all major systems, including those directly affecting combat effectiveness.


The length of the new boat is 84 m, the width is 9,1 m. The surface displacement is 3 thousand tons, the underwater one must exceed 4,2-4,3 thousand tons. A streamlined body was used, slightly different from the "Soryu". On top of it is a modified wheelhouse guard with horizontal rudders. The aft planes are made in an X-shaped pattern.

The ship's power plant was built using diesel generators, lithium-ion batteries and a propeller-driven electric motor. Component types and characteristics are not disclosed. It was previously mentioned that such a power plant scheme allows you to increase the main characteristics and gain advantages over other architectures.

For the 29SS project, new electronic reconnaissance and communications equipment has been developed. A new generation hydroacoustic station based on fiber-optic arrays was also created. Due to this equipment, the ability to detect and track underwater targets will improve. Based on the existing developments and components, a new combat information and control system was created.

The armament of the new boats consists of four 533 mm bow torpedo tubes. The submarine will be able to use the torpedoes in service, incl. the latest models Harpoon missiles will be launched using torpedo tubes.


A few days before the descent. The design of the nose cone is visible

The ship's crew consists of 70 people. Comfortable living and service conditions are provided on board. A high degree of automation will reduce loads. It is especially noted that during the construction of the submarine, the special needs of female submariners were taken into account. This feature of the 29SS project is important in view of the fact that this year the Academy of the submarine forces for the first time accepted female cadets.

Prospects and challenges


In the near future, the lead diesel-electric submarine of the new project will be put on sea trials, within which it will have to demonstrate all its advantages over the equipment of the previous types. In general, positive results are expected in all major areas, from CIUS to conditions for the crew. However, the most interesting in the project is the power plant of the original architecture.

Based on the results of studies of the recent past, the MSS Japan lost interest in air-independent power plants and decided to return to the diesel-electric scheme, but at a new technological level. A similar scheme has already been tested on the modified diesel-electric submarine "Soryu" and has shown its advantages. As a result, promising ships will be equipped with diesel engines and batteries.


The stern of the ship. Propeller hidden

The main advantage of diesel-electric submarines over Soryu-type submarines is less noise. Unlike Stirling engines, an electric power plant in all modes, incl. produces less noise underwater. In addition, lithium-ion batteries are used, which are superior to traditional lead-acid in all respects.

In this case, the selected batteries are not without drawbacks. First of all, this is a high cost. In addition, batteries generate heat during charging and discharging, and can emit toxic vapors or ignite if operating modes are violated. All this makes special demands on the equipment of the battery wells, on which the survivability and stability of the ship and the life of its crew depend.

Against the background of competitors


The construction of the Taigei submarine and the plans of the MSS command are very interesting - especially against the background of previous Japanese developments and current plans of foreign countries. It is believed that the diesel-electric circuit is outdated, and the non-nuclear submarine fleet needs fundamentally new systems. Developing these ideas, Japan was among the first countries to master and use in practice VNEU technologies. Now she is the first to refuse them.

The revised version of the Soryu project has already confirmed the correctness of this decision, and now a fundamentally new project has been created. Until the end of the decade, the 29SS / Taigei project will significantly affect the development of the Japanese MSS submarine forces. In addition, it cannot be ruled out that Japanese work will affect the world's submarine shipbuilding. And then other countries will also return to diesel-electric power plants.
Author:
Photos used:
MSS Japan, Wikimedia Commons
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  1. The leader of the Redskins
    The leader of the Redskins 19 October 2020 06: 19
    +6
    I repeat - there is nothing to discuss without performance characteristics.
    Although...
    during the construction of the submarine, the special needs of female divers were taken into account
    Is it just separate cabins or a bidet in the toilet?
    1. Snail N9
      Snail N9 19 October 2020 06: 42
      11
      Bidet ... Have you seen Japanese toilets? This is a must see .... seriously. yes
      1. DrEng527
        DrEng527 19 October 2020 11: 35
        +2
        Quote: Snail N9
        Have you seen Japanese toilets?

        saw
    2. Jacket in stock
      Jacket in stock 19 October 2020 09: 15
      0
      Retired Vice Admiral Masao Kobayashi, former commander of the submarine forces of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Forces, said the use of lithium-ion batteries "should dramatically change the way non-nuclear submarines operate." As some calculations show, the theoretical submarine range of a submarine with a displacement of 1500-1800 tons when using LIB is 16-000 miles at 18 knots, and 000 miles on the move at 8-22 knots.
      1. Temples
        Temples 19 October 2020 10: 16
        +3
        Quote: Snail N9
        Have you seen Japanese toilets?

        With built-in voting system! good wassat
      2. Hammer
        Hammer 19 October 2020 10: 40
        11
        Quote: Jacket in stock
        As some calculations show, the theoretical submarine range of a submarine with a displacement of 1500-1800 tons when using LIB is 16-000 miles at 18 knots, and 000 miles on the move at 8-22 knots.

        Do not believe everything that is written. There are also three letters on the fence, and behind it is only firewood. ;) There are no such batteries, except for a nuclear reactor, on which a submarine could go 16-18 thousand miles without recharging. Doesn't exist even in projects. Such nonsense could be written only by a "teapot" from journalism, who does not care what to write, if only more.
        The maximum that LIA can at this technological stage is to increase the submarine's submerged range within 1500 miles (well, maybe a little more), and only in an economical way. This is about 16-20 days with a 3-5 nodal stroke. Data comparable to VNEU. But unlike VNEU, they can give a full speed of 20+ knots at any time. A VNEU maximum 5-7 knots. In modern combat, the underwater speed and, consequently, great maneuverability are very important, especially in the battle with MAPLs. Stealth is only important until the first shot.
        1. DrEng527
          DrEng527 19 October 2020 11: 37
          0
          Quote: Hammer
          But unlike VNEU, they can give a full speed of 20+ knots at any time. A VNEU maximum 5-7 knots

          if it's not a secret, do you think that diesel-electric submarines with VNEU do not have storage batteries? bully
          1. Hammer
            Hammer 20 October 2020 03: 41
            +2
            Quote: DrEng527
            if it's not a secret, do you think that diesel-electric submarines with VNEU do not have storage batteries?

            Of course there is (they are on the submarine). But in terms of its characteristics (capacity, charge / current-return, etc.) it will be significantly inferior to a submarine with LIB. And if we take into account the work in the field of new generation storage batteries, with a capacity many times greater than that of LIB, but with comparable characteristics of charge / current-return, then the prospects for submarines with a classical architecture of a power plant look very good in the future.
            1. DrEng527
              DrEng527 20 October 2020 11: 23
              0
              Quote: Hammer
              will be significantly inferior to submarines with LIA.

              but I correspond to conventional diesel-electric submarines
              Quote: Hammer
              very perspective

              the prospects are always good, the question is how much it will cost - in the article, the cost of the submarine came to the lower threshold of the nuclear submarine request
              1. Hammer
                Hammer 20 October 2020 16: 38
                +1
                Quote: DrEng527
                but I correspond to conventional diesel-electric submarines

                I didn't quite understand what you mean. Who meets the diesel-electric submarine? VNEU or PL with LIA? And by what parameter?
                Quote: DrEng527
                the prospects are always good, the question is how much it will cost - in the article, the cost of the submarine came to the lower threshold of the nuclear submarine

                Something smallish you get a threshold. ))) For Americans, MAPL starts from 2 billion, for the British in terms of dollars, about the same. The French build cheaper, so they have simpler boats. Cost is a relative question ... Head boats in a series are always expensive. Further from side to side, the price drops significantly. As Sergei Korolev said, being the first is always difficult and expensive.
                1. DrEng527
                  DrEng527 20 October 2020 18: 21
                  0
                  Quote: Hammer
                  Something smallish you get a threshold. )

                  the Franks too ... request
                  Quote: Hammer
                  As they have simpler boats.

                  do we need to complicate? hi can build 885-2 easier for the price of 3? request White bishops are a vicious concept ... repeat
                  Quote: Hammer
                  As Sergei Korolev said, being the first is always difficult and expensive.

                  like nuclear submarines have been building for 70 years bully
                2. DrEng527
                  DrEng527 20 October 2020 18: 22
                  0
                  Quote: Hammer
                  I didn't quite understand what you mean.

                  yes battery ...
    3. The comment was deleted.
  2. KCA
    KCA 19 October 2020 07: 03
    13
    Somehow, at VO Yaroslavna's daily crying about VNEU, especially mentioning Japan as an example, and, suddenly, an ordinary diesel-electric submarine, somewhere a dog rummaged, not otherwise ...
    1. Jacket in stock
      Jacket in stock 19 October 2020 08: 32
      +3
      Quote: KCA
      and, suddenly, an ordinary diesel-electric submarine, somewhere a dog rummaged, not otherwise

      Ordinary, but unusual.
      No wonder it was written about new technological level
      The capacity of the new battery more than covers the power of any styling and others like them, and diesel, it is already on all boats with VNEU. For on a stirling you will not sail far, it is just in addition to the "usual" diesel + battery.
    2. Mountain shooter
      Mountain shooter 19 October 2020 08: 38
      +5
      Quote: KCA
      Somehow, on VO Yaroslavna's daily crying about VNEU, especially mentioning Japan as an example, and, suddenly, an ordinary diesel-electric submarine, somewhere a dog rummaged, not otherwise

      Have you noticed? All across! The boat is, of course, strange. Very large, and only 4 torpedo tubes. Well, the crew is very large ... it seems to me that they do not finish speaking. Well, how much did they increase the battery capacity? It would be necessary in general to order. But the larger the boat, the greater the need for energy. And what speed will the boat develop under water and on the surface? How far can you sneak underwater?
      The trend is important. Effort and time at VNEU they are on or clearly ... and once they refused, and even immediately laid the series - it means that they decided - there is a dead end ... I wish we could remember ... a small-sized nuclear power plant operating on a generator ... and with the same batteries!
      1. Doccor18
        Doccor18 19 October 2020 08: 52
        +1
        Very large, and only 4 torpedo tubes. The crew is very large

        Perhaps the ammunition load of SNT and anti-ship missiles is very impressive. And also various special equipment for combat swimmers, since it is so ultra-quiet ...
      2. KCA
        KCA 19 October 2020 09: 06
        +4
        Apparently, with small-sized nuclear power plants, everything is fine with us, well, they can’t lie to everyone, both with us and not with us, but with batteries it’s not very good everywhere, even Tesla for thirty years tested 18650 fingers burn at once -two, well, and Losharik ...
      3. Bobrick
        Bobrick 19 October 2020 09: 36
        0
        Just to about an order of magnitude, the high energy intensity of lithium-ion batteries compared to lead-acid ones comes out (specific energy intensity of lead-acid batteries: 25-40 W * h / kg, for lithium-ion: 110-270 W * h / kg, according to Wikipedia).

        A small nuclear power plant is unlikely to be a useful thing - the energy output is small, and nothing can be done about it - just increase the size.
        1. Mountain shooter
          Mountain shooter 19 October 2020 10: 38
          +2
          Quote: Bobrick
          A small nuclear power plant is unlikely to be a useful thing - the energy output is small, and nothing can be done about it - just increase the size.

          Here you are wrong. Project 705 ("Lira" in NATO - "Alpha") did not complain about the power in any way, 41 submerged knots !!! And the underwater displacement is 3100, less than that of the "Japanese". So compact nuclear power plants exist ... Many years have passed since then. Technology is advancing.
          1. Bobrick
            Bobrick 19 October 2020 11: 53
            +2
            So you are talking about such small-sized installations with a capacity of 155 MW (with an output comparable to the consumption of the city). It was necessary to indicate the power.

            There is simply some limit when there is no point in fencing a nuclear power plant, except for a slight increase in the operating time, let it be conditionally 1-2 MW, as replacements for 1-2 diesel power plants for 1000 hp. as a source of battery charge (problems with loading and unloading due to a small amount of fuel, complex rules and regulations when working with a reactor, operating costs, etc. outweigh all the advantages).
      4. DrEng527
        DrEng527 19 October 2020 11: 41
        -1
        Quote: Mountain Shooter
        small-sized nuclear power plant powered by a generator

        no, without a generator - you need a reactor that immediately produces electricity due to thermionic converters, etc. - otherwise, again, increased noise ... as they did in space on lianas ... hi
        1. Mountain shooter
          Mountain shooter 19 October 2020 11: 45
          +3
          Quote: DrEng527
          no, without a generator - you need a reactor that immediately produces electricity due to thermionic converters, etc. - otherwise, again, increased noise ... as they did in space on lianas.

          Firstly, the efficiency is lower than the plinth, and secondly, the temperatures are high. Intensive cooling is required. Pumps noise ... This is not space, where heat is discharged by radiation.
          1. DrEng527
            DrEng527 19 October 2020 11: 53
            +2
            Quote: Mountain Shooter
            Firstly, the efficiency is lower than the plinth, in

            not essential! energy will be enough for a year of work - for war conditions this is more than enough ...
            Quote: Mountain Shooter
            secondly, the temperatures are high.

            what?
            Quote: Mountain Shooter
            Intensive cooling is required. Pumps noise ..

            water has good heat capacity! but there are also low-noise pumps - for example, electric - not on electric motors, but electric ... sea water is a conductor ... hi
            Quote: Mountain Shooter
            This is not space, where heat is discharged by radiation.

            in space it is more difficult - you need to avoid overheating of the electronics at the same time, and in the sea there are two cooling circuits and that's all ... for example, the first is on metal (lead), and the second is a regular heat exchanger ... yes, a heat trace, but at 300 kW and 5% efficiency it's only 6 MW of heat ...
            1. Mountain shooter
              Mountain shooter 19 October 2020 13: 56
              +1
              Quote: DrEng527
              in space it is more difficult - you need to avoid overheating of the electronics at the same time, and in the sea there are two cooling circuits and that's all ... for example, the first is on metal (lead), and the second is a regular heat exchanger ... yes, a heat trace, but at 300 kW and 5% efficiency it is only 6 MW of heat

              The emission reactor operates in a vacuum. That is why it comes to space. On land and even more so on a boat - not an option ...
              1. DrEng527
                DrEng527 19 October 2020 14: 50
                +1
                Quote: Mountain Shooter
                the mission reactor operates in a vacuum.

                do you need a vacuum for it to work? bully
                Quote: Mountain Shooter
                On land and even more so on a boat - not an option ...

                unfounded statement, no more ... request
                1. dauria
                  dauria 19 October 2020 20: 47
                  +1
                  unfounded statement, no more ...

                  What, techie, is it difficult to butt on "VO"? Get used to it ... wink
                  You are right, Sergei. The cycle of the boat "crawl on low - fly on full" is quite enough to get by for recharging 20-40 times less power than the power of the main unit. And it's really possible to get by with RTGs. Probably, the problem is in the little things that are not visible to us. Boat tactics, or price, or ....
                  In general, the question is - if the boat does not have the ability to stick out the pipe for recharging every couple of weeks, then what are the rest of our forces doing in this water area? Here any boat will be hunted down, even a non-floating one.
                  1. DrEng527
                    DrEng527 20 October 2020 11: 20
                    0
                    Quote: dauria
                    Probably, the problem is in the little things that we can't see. T

                    I think there are problems of a different plan, but according to indirect data there is progress ... repeat
                    Quote: dauria
                    difficult to butt on "IN"? P

                    By no means, often just ridiculous - people do not know the elementary, but aplomb ... request
                    Quote: dauria
                    Generally the question

                    the question is correct, but life is more difficult ... turning on the RPD immediately unmasks the boat, and this is not necessary in any case ... hi
      5. kig
        kig 19 October 2020 14: 53
        0
        Quote: Mountain Shooter
        Very big

        Perhaps this is due to the batteries, which require special operating conditions.
      6. Boa kaa
        Boa kaa 19 October 2020 22: 12
        +2
        Quote: Mountain Shooter
        I wish we could remember ... a small-sized nuclear power plant operating on a generator ... and with the same batteries!

        1. WOW-6 is already history. But, as far as I know, Rosatom has been instructed to develop a new small-sized nuclear reactor. At first, apparently for space, then, perhaps, the fleet will receive something ...
        2. LIAB. We tried ... but failed. Losharik could not resist. People died ...
        3. There is a new direction of silicon-sulfide batteries, which have 5 times more energy capacity than LIAB.
        4. Another option is "nuclear" AB. But this is a perspective. We need a service of the Republic of Belarus, sanitary inspection facilities and other crap to ensure the regime.
        Surely there will be a problem of heat removal, and, as a consequence, the thermal effect of the submarine.
        There is a vanishing hope that our wundermen will nevertheless finish the VNEU for direct generation of electricity from the chemical reaction of reforming diesel fuel.
        Somehow, however.
    3. Vovanya
      Vovanya 19 October 2020 13: 22
      -3
      The Japs were not smart enough to make a good Stirling scheme, so they followed the path of least resistance.
  3. KVU-NSVD
    KVU-NSVD 19 October 2020 08: 27
    +2
    On the issue of obsolescence of Varshavyanka ...
    1. Jacket in stock
      Jacket in stock 19 October 2020 08: 50
      +6
      And what about Varshavyanka?
      There, except for the battery of the First World War, all other equipment is also far from equal to the Japanese.
      If the batteries can still be simply replaced (theoretically), then it simply will not work with sonar and BIUS, you have to disassemble the whole boat.
      And yes, we don't have such batteries either.
    2. 257950
      257950 19 October 2020 10: 53
      0
      Varshavyanka, with a large battery capacity, will not become obsolete for a long time.
      1. timokhin-aa
        timokhin-aa 19 October 2020 11: 13
        11
        It has long been outdated, there, in order to simply make it applicable against some kind of anti-aircraft with PLO, half of the boat must be shoveled.
      2. Cympak
        Cympak 19 October 2020 11: 44
        +6
        The tragic experience of "Losharik" shows that a simple replacement of lead-acid batteries with lithium-ion ones is fraught with disaster. it is almost impossible to extinguish a burning lithium-ion battery. But lithium-ion batteries are virtually maintenance free, unlike lead-acid ones. Therefore, when introducing lithium-ion batteries, it is necessary to change the design of diesel-electric submarines: to take out the batteries into separate sealed fire-resistant compartments equipped with a powerful freon fire extinguishing system.
        1. Gust
          Gust 19 October 2020 20: 38
          +2
          There is no need to equip anything with freon fire extinguishing systems. Firstly, this will not help, and secondly, HDA with batteries in the interbody space in case of fire do not threaten the boat.
          1. Cympak
            Cympak 21 October 2020 13: 28
            0
            It's probably time to abandon the two-body architecture as an anachronism. "The British have not cleaned their guns with bricks for a long time."
  4. DrEng527
    DrEng527 19 October 2020 11: 38
    +1
    the large dimensions of the submarine and the size of the crew are surprising - what kind of automation is there? bully
    and so everything is correct - played enough with VNEU and understood the banal - there is a gain in autonomy, but the price is excessive - the loss of secrecy ... request
  5. Koval Sergey
    Koval Sergey 19 October 2020 13: 08
    18
    Did the Japanese start saving too?
  6. Looking for
    Looking for 19 October 2020 16: 17
    +1
    judging by the photo. the declared displacement is greatly underestimated.
  7. Ryaruav
    Ryaruav 19 October 2020 19: 58
    0
    chase, retreat after an attack is a small-sized power unit, but sneaking up and attacking the battery is unique, today the quietest power unit
  8. K298rtm
    K298rtm 19 October 2020 21: 01
    +2
    I have a simple question - Why don't the Japanese use a water cannon?
    1. agond
      agond 19 October 2020 23: 09
      0
      The logical development of the stirling is the Kalina cycle and then the Yayli monothermal installation (if it is really possible), and the Japanese simply darken.