Astute Class

Attack Submarines

The Astute-class are the largest, most advanced and most powerful attack submarines ever operated by the Royal Navy, combining world leading sensors, design and weaponry in a versatile vessel.

In the first part of 2012 they proved their ability to prepare and launch tomahawk missiles, successfully firing 2 missiles from the Gulf of Mexico and accurately hitting the targets on the test range in Northern Florida.

Explore Weapons & Missiles

  • Weapons and Equipment
  • Spearfish Torpedo

    Spearfish Torpedo Anti-submarine torpedo

    The Spearfish torpedo is the heavyweight torpedo it weighs nearly two tonnes and is capable of blasting enemy submarines or ships out of the water.

    At full speed, Spearfish can attack at target up to 14 miles away. At low speed, that increases to more than 30 miles.

    It is guided either by a copper wire or closes on to its target using its inbuilt sonar, delivering a 660lb explosive charge. That detonates either when it strikes the hull of an enemy submarine, or via an acoustic proximity fuse underneath the target.


  • Tomahawk Cruise Missile

    Tomahawk Cruise Missile Sea Launched Missile

    The Tomahawk IV – known in the Royal Navy as TLAM (Tomahawk Land Attack Cruise Missile) – allows submarines to strike at ground targets hundreds of miles inland with pinpoint accuracy.

    The missile has been in use with the Submarine Service since the late 1990's.

    Tomahawk IV is the latest version of the missile. It has a longer range than its predecessors (well in excess of 1,000 miles), can be directed at a new target in mid-flight, and can also beam back images of the battlefield to its mother submarine.

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Fact

Each boat will have a lock in lock out capability, meaning divers can leave the submarine while submerged.