HMS Trenchant Reaches Maintenance Milestone

Babcock has marked a major milestone in the substantial Revalidation and Assisted Maintenance Period (RAMP) on Trafalgar class submarine HMS Trenchant – the largest RAMP undertaken to date in Devonport – with the achievement of flood-up, marking the conclusion of some 16 months in dry dock.

This significant RAMP involves a challenging programme of maintenance, system revalidation and capability upgrades, with the successful achievement of flood-up signifying approximately 70 per cent completion of the work-package.

Activities to date have included the installation of a new composite rudder, overhaul of both port and starboard circulating water systems, the largest RAMP survey package ever undertaken, torpedo tube revalidation, and pressure hull revalidation. It has also involved a significant package to survey and overhaul the Sonar 2076 flank arrays, installation of the Defence Information Infrastructure, a galley upgrade, a tank maintenance programme, and application of the recently developed internal non-destructive testing (NDT) inspection method for tail shafts. Trenchant will undock with the product of tile refurbishment and ‘fairness of form’ work, as well as the application of a new signature-reducing paint system.

Additionally, the RAMP has seen the trial of an eddy current non-destructive testing (NDT) technique that allows weld lines to be inspected without paint removal.

Over the next 12 months the team will focus on completing the remaining work, which needs to be undertaken while the vessel is afloat. This includes the completion of maintenance and upgrade to the nuclear steam raising plant (NRSP), which involves the submarine being heeled, restricting the wider activities that can be undertaken onboard.

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Image: Royal Navy