Japan will keep building the world’s largest and most sophisticated diesel-electric submarines at a rate of about one per year until at least 2015. Studies for a follow-on design have been underway since 2005 for a notional fiscal year 2016 submarine to be completed in 2021. If the 40-year trend of increasing boat size continues, the Fiscal 2016 submarine could be as large as 3,150 tons standard and 4,550 tons submerged. The drive for larger submarines reflects the navy shifting its ...

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