Brr, brass monkies up ere!
During the early 1950s the Americans developed a nuclear propulsion plant for installation into a nuclear submarine and in doing so, made Dreadnought the very first true submarine of its type. Previous types of boats were really only submersibles which had to surface or snort for air. These had limited dived duration and short range. Admittedly the snort system eased the problem of fresh air but they were still limited severely in range and speed. The introduction of a Nuclear Submarine was to change all this by injecting a complete change in submarine underwater warfare.
Towards the end of the 1950s an agreement was signed between Great Britain and the United States which enable Great Britain to purchase a Nuclear Power Plant complete based on the US Navy's "SkipJack" class S/M. This transfer of technology was fitted into a submarine to be built at Barrow-in-Furness by Vickers Armstrong Limited who had a vast experience in submarine building. The name designated to this first nuclear submersible was to be "DREADNOUGHT". Dreadnought was always recognisable by her folding fore-plane silhouette and internally having two languages in system handbooks - American terminology back aft and Brit terminology forward .
The "DREADNOUGHT" before her had been revolutionary in design at the time and this new one was to be even more so. "DREADNOUGHT" was to be the ninth Man - of - War to bear this name. Soon, another Dreadnought shall grow.
HMS DREADNOUGHT marked an important milestone in the history of the Royal Navy. Upon her commissioning in 1963, the Royal Navy entered the nuclear age and Cold War. HMS Dreadnought was the epitome of the modern hunter killer submarine and Britain became only the third nation in the world to possess such a deadly weapon. In her 20 years of service, Dreadnought made history on numerous occasions. She became the first British nuclear submarine to surface at the North Pole and became the first to sail underwater all the way to Singapore.
Keel laid in Barrow-in-Furness: 12th June 1959
Launched: 21st October 1960
Commissioned: April 1963
Displacement: 3,000 tons standard
265.5 Ft long
32.25 Ft beam
26 Ft draught
Tubes: 6 x 21" Bow
New Dreadnought getting closer!
At anchor in Lamlash Bay
BAE have released a short presentation (Click on the red underlined text to link to a short You Tube video defining the new Dreadnought.) Part 3 should be interesting!