Dutch Ministry of Defence Signs Submarines Contract

Dutch Ministry of Defence Signs Submarines Contract

This week, the Ministry of Defence signed a contract for the refurbishment of the control rooms of the four Walrus-class submarines.

A contract was also signed for the delivery of four Super High Frequency (SHF) satellite communication systems. The contracts form part of the sustainment programme for the Walrus-class submarines designed to assure the deployability of the Dutch submarines up to at least 2025.

The present workstations, that date from the 1970s, no longer meet today’s ergonomic and technological requirements. The new consoles receive and collate the diverse information streams incoming on the workstations of the operatives. The necessary refurbishment was made possible through collaboration between four industrial partners, TNO and the Defence organisation. They brought together the user requirements, technological capabilities and modern ergonomic principles.


The SHF satellite communication system meets a growing need for sharing globally collected information with national and international partners. Thanks to the new system, the submarines can make contact with the Defence networks and in this way the submarine crews will have the same communication facilities as the crews of other navy vessels. The replacement of the satellite communication system means that the existing communication mast on the port side of the ship will be replaced by a new upgraded mast.

Sustainment programme

The Walrus-class sustainment programme includes improvements to the Combat Management System, by which the sensors and weapons are controlled, as well as to the sonar systems, the communication systems and the so-called platform systems needed for the vessel’s operation. In addition, one of the periscopes will be replaced by a modern ‘optronic mast’ in which all the optical functions are digitised and an infrared night-vision system is incorporated. The implementation of the programme will start in 2013.

Naval Today Staff, December 07, 2011; Image: defensie