Defence capability reinforced by modernised submarine

Recently, HMS Uppland was transferred from the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration to the Swedish Armed Forces, following comprehensive modernisation at the Saab Kockum shipyard. The modernisation makes this already advanced submarine ready to face the demands of the future.

HMS Uppland is once more part of the Swedish Armed Forces’ submarine capability. Photo: Swedish Armed Forces
Navy Chief Ewa Skoog Haslum together with the Head of Navy Materiel at the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration, Odd Werin. Photo: Swedish Armed Forces
Fleet Commander Fredrik Lindén, left, receives HMS Uppland from Anders Järn at the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration Submarine Department. Photo: Max Eriksson/Swedish Armed Forces

The submarine capability is one of the Swedish Armed Forces’ most efficient and effective tools in a crisis or war. The adversary does not know where the submarines are and must adapt to this insecurity. Already in peacetime, submarines constitute an efficient intelligence platform contributing to the Swedish Armed Forces’ situational awareness of the sea.

One step closer to Blekinge class

HMS Uppland is the second Gotland class submarine to be modernised. The first, HMS Gotland, was delivered earlier this year. Modernisation is about replacing on-board systems that have reached the limit of their technical life span, as well as introducing the same type of technology as that in the next Blekinge class submarine. This has many advantages.

“Apart from making this submarine more modern and efficient it is also facilitating the next step, to Blekinge class. We will have time to learn all the new advantages of the new system, which will make introduction and the technology leap easier”, says Commander of the 1st Submarine Fleet Fredrik Lindén.

The submarine has been equipped with new sensors, new command information system and an air-independent propulsion system, among other things. To facilitate the upgrade, the submarine was split in half at the shipyard and then extended by two meters. The update was made by Saab Kockum and the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration.

Enhanced naval capability

In December 2020, the Swedish parliament decided on the Swedish Armed Forces’ capability and direction for the time period 2021-2025. The number of submarines will increase from four to five. The delivery of HMS Uppland increases the submarine capability.

“An important detail is that this upgrade provides the submarine capability with a new opportunity to be a part of coordinated naval combat, against an adversary that comes from the sea. We are now able to do that in close cooperation with warships, for example”, Commander Fredrik Lindén concludes.