Singapore to acquire two more (AIP)-equipped Type 218SG diesel-electric submarines

IMDEX 2017: Singapore acquires two more Type-218SG submarines

Kelvin Wong, Singapore and Ridzwan Rahmat, Singapore – IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly

16 May 2017

Singapore will acquire two more air-independent propulsion (AIP)-equipped Type 218SG diesel-electric submarines, the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) announced during the IMDEX 2017 exhibition in Singapore.

The deal, which was signed with ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS), will also include crew training in Germany as well as logistics support. The country already has two Type 218SG submarines – ordered in 2013 – under construction at TKMS’ Kiel facility, bringing the total number of boats on order to four.

“In addition to the two previously announced, the Republic of Singapore Navy [RSN] will acquire two more Type 218SG submarines to replace its older submarines, with an expected delivery from 2024 onwards,” Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said during the exhibition’s opening address, noting that the first two boats are expected to be delivered to the RSN in 2021 and 2022 respectively.

Specifications earlier released by TKMS revealed that the Type 218SG submarine – which is designed to address the specific operational requirements of the RSN – is about 70 m long and 6.3 m wide and displaces approximately 2,000 tonnes.

Details of its capabilities remain scant, but Jane’s earlier reported that the Type 218SG platform has been developed from TKMS’ Type 214 design, although the new submarine has been extended in length to accommodate additional mission systems as well as to support future upgradability.

Jane’s also understands that the new design combines the “best features” of the company’s Type 212A-class and the Type 214-class platforms. For example, the Type 218SG features an X-rudder stern configuration similar to the Type 212A, which offers enhanced manoeuvrability in confined littoral waters, as opposed to the Type 214’s cruciform rudder arrangement.

“The Type 218SG will also use the same air independent propulsion [AIP] system found in the Type 214 submarine,” a company source earlier told Jane’s.

Original post:


This is enough reason for the RTN to buy submarines and at this rate the RTN would need 16-20 I hope a mix of make maybe Swedish subs in addition to Chinese subs.  This is evident enough especially after the Kra Canal is built that more than 50% of shipping will move through it………

The Strait Times reported


“At steady state, the four Type-218SGs in service will complement each other in maintenance, logistics and operations, and have better capabilities to protect our sea lines of communications,” said Dr Ng.

He noted that more than 50 per cent of global container traffic now moves through the Asia-Pacific. Singapore itself has seen an increase of 20 per cent over the last decade, from 480 million tones in 2006 to almost 600 million tonnes last year.

To protect their interests, Asean countries, Australia, China, and India have all increased the strength of their navies and naval budgets in Asia-Pacific are expected to increase by 60 per cent through 2020.

Citing statistics from US-based naval analysis and advisory agency AMI International, Dr Ng added that by 2030, there will be approximately 800 more warships and submarines operating within the Asia-Pacific region compared to today.

Dr Ng also stressed the importance of multilateral cooperation to combat transnational threats such as terrorism, piracy and illegal smuggling of weapons of mass destruction.

“Individual counties need to work together, even as each appropriately strengthens their navies and other maritime security agencies,” he said.

He cited how Singapore has been part of joint patrols in the Malacca Straits and offered assistance for joint patrols by Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines in the Sulu Seas to deal with security issues. Partial quote – Source

Type 218SG submarine

TKMS Germany provided some technical details of new conventional submarines Type 218SG for Singapore Navy. 

Type 218SG will have a length of 70 meters and a width of 6.3 meters. Displacement at the surface will be 2,000 tons, a total of 28 officers and sailors needed. Estimated speed and range are still unknown.

The unit will be designed to carry heavy torpedoes and fired cruise missiles. Torpedo tubes will also be used for landing troops and deep sea submersible vehicles for special forces.

Type 218SG will have eight 533-mm torpedo tubes, equipped with AIP and used X-shaped tail rudder. The contract value is estimated exceed 1 billion euros.

The units can also be used for the observation and analysis of the marine environment, detection and removal of sea mines, conduct reconnaissance and support activities carried out by the army in the coastal region. Source

Class overview
Name: Type 218SG
Builders: ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems, Kiel
Operators:  Republic of Singapore Navy
Preceded by: Archer-class submarine
Cost: <$1 billion USD
Planned: 4
General characteristics
Type: Submarine
Displacement: 2,000
Length: 70m
Beam: 6.3m
Installed power: 2x120kW PEM fuel cells
Propulsion: AIP
Crew: 28 
Notes: Delivery expected in 2020


Son Wonil-class Type 214 (for reference): Details


6 thoughts on “Singapore to acquire two more (AIP)-equipped Type 218SG diesel-electric submarines

  1. Leong Wai yim

    Most of us know with or without the kra canal project , billions of dollars incomes does not meant directly would benefit the lower class people , more likely those billions would go to the influence upper class living on the top of the ivory tower .
    In fact the project pose more problems for the people around the canel .


    1. nonothai Post author

      Than you better read my Kra Canal post and I do not allow IB on my blog as this is a Thai blog not a Singapore Blog and IB have no jurisdiction here.

      Note – IB is abbreviation for Internet Brigade which from what I understand is run by the Singapore government to ridicule, criticize, spam or troll and attack any person who have written a negative post on Singapore. These people usually have low IQ, as you can see per above comments.


  2. Leong Wai yim

    And these lever of military exercise are just a tip of the iceberg .
    Remember these are just recorded on video , there are much more working exercise behind the scenes not recorded on video .

    Don’t view Singapore as a threat to Thailand ! Singapore unlike the others , we’re just a red dot on world map !


    1. nonothai Post author

      It seems Thailand has actually tuned down exercises with Singapore as of late there has been very little! Even at Cobra Gold 2017 Singapore were never it any of the main exercises and they have never been such as the live fire where Malaysia participated. BTW nothing to gain from exercising with Singapore as I recall Singapore was the one who approached Thailand in the 70s and requested that we train her troops in jungle warfare as Thailand has plenty of experience from the Vietnam war, Laos covert war funded by the CIA and fighting the CPT.


  3. Leong Wai yim

    It’s a sad thing to know till now after so many years of friendship with Thailand , ( both Singapore and Thailand operates a joint army camp at kanchanaburi , sai Yok camp for military training exercise ) , has been a regular at cobra exercise , cope tiger exercise , the transfer of F16 A / B to Thai royal air force ,
    as well as you can see Thai high ranking officers regular on working visit to Singapore a couple of times each year , and people like you choose not to see the relationship of Singapore and Thailand as a positive , but choose to view it as a negative .

    Both our countries military trained together regularly .

    Worse still , with people like you choose to use the kra canel means to block Singapore economy is bad , the world knows that Singapore economy survival rely largely on sea trade .
    To use those method at Singapore is as evil as a devil .

    The works on the Kra canel helps China more than anyone else .

    And the world knows what china avre up to their sleeve .

    They even try to confiscate our Terrex armoured vehicles while our Terrex are returning to Singapore from Taiwan transit via HK .

    If Thailand were to buy submarines or upgrade their military hardware , please do so , but Please don’t use Singapore as a threat to Thailand as a excuse to purchase military weapons .
    Thailand latest LPD are purchased from Singapore

    Don’t be a asshole to come undermine the good relationship between both countries .


    1. nonothai Post author

      So you suggest that Thailand forgo the Kra Canal and lose billions of income to feed her 70 million people so that Singapore can have a prosperous life and living standards? Why do I feel you and many Singaporeans have this self centered mind set? Where did you read that Thailand considers Singapore as a threat????? BTW what China is doing is nothing different from what the West have been doing for thousands of years.



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