Taking Engineering to the Depths of the Ocean

29 Apr 2024

Welcome Inimitable, the fourth of the Republic of Singapore Navy’s (RSN) Invincible-class submarines. In a ceremony officiated by Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean on 22 April 2024, in Kiel, Germany, Inimitable was launched by his sister, Ms Teo Swee Lian. 

Web Article_Launch of Submarine_01Photo: MINDEF

Web Article_Launch of Submarine_02Photo: MINDEF

In his speech, Senior Minister Teo shared that the Invincible-class submarine project and the launch of Inimitable marks a new era for Singapore’s submarine journey, adding that “we have delivered a submarine which is uniquely Singaporean – specially adapted for our waters, and fitted with advanced digital systems to meet our mission and operational needs.”

Taking on the role of overall systems integrator and systems engineer, the DSTA team worked closely with the RSN as well as industry partner thyssenkrupp Marine Systems GmbH (tkMS) to conceptualise and engineer the submarines to suit Singapore’s needs and operating environment while enhancing mobility and warfare capabilities. This includes the integration of indigenous combat management systems and software algorithms with advanced automation and sense-making capabilities to enhance situational awareness and sharpen the decision-making support for the crew. This will allow the RSN to effectively manoeuvre the submarines in Singapore’s shallow and congested waters. 

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In the days ahead, the team will continue to oversee the integration and testing of the submarines in Germany to ensure that safety, technical and operational specifications are met, as well as supporting the local operationalisation of the submarines as they return to Singapore.

Programme Manager (Naval Systems) Neo Ya Kai, who has been deeply involved in the submarine project for 8.5 years, shared: “I have been overseeing Inimitable’s production since her pressure hull production phase. It is a proud moment for me and my team to see through her construction phase with various parts being put together successfully. I am ecstatic to witness her launch.” 

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