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《TAIPEI TIMES》Domestic sub’s sea acceptance test still on track

The Hai Kun, the nation’s first domestically built submarine, is transfered to a dry dock in Kaohsiung on Feb. 27.
Photo: Lee Hui-chou, Taipei Times

The Hai Kun, the nation’s first domestically built submarine, is transfered to a dry dock in Kaohsiung on Feb. 27. Photo: Lee Hui-chou, Taipei Times

2024/05/18 03:00

By Lo Tien-pin and Jonathan Chin / Staff reporter, with staff writer

Admiral Huang Shu-kuang (黃曙光), who heads the Indigenous Defense Submarine Program, and Cheng Wen-lon (鄭文隆), chairman of shipbuilder CSBC Corp, Taiwan (台灣國際造船), are expected to be on board during the Hai Kun submarine’s sea acceptance test this month.

Taiwan received the first shipment of long-awaited mast sensor components from the US, boosting hopes that the submarine could undergo its sea acceptance test on schedule, a defense official said yesterday.

Shipments of the L3Harris Photonics Mast parts were four months behind schedule, sparking worries that the prototype diesel-electric sub would not be ready for the test, they said.

The component Taiwan received last week was either the optical periscope or electronic periscope that together make up the mast, they said, adding that the other half of the system is expected next week.

This means the Hai Kun could be fitted with the mast and battery systems in time to undertake the crucial test later this month as planned, they said.

The sea acceptance test consists of 31 capability trials divided into four main categories, which are surface navigation, shallow water navigation, deep water navigation and combat system operations.

To pass the acceptance test, the sub must demonstrate the performance of its independent power generator, voice communication system and torpedo launch systems, among others.

Previously, president-elect William Lai’s (賴清德) staff announced that Huang would be retained on the National Security Council, indicating that he would continue to be the submarine program’s head, they said.

Huang’s involvement in the test would mark the fulfillment of a personal promise to the development team that he would be in the boat at the moment of its acceptance, the official said.

Separately, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has presented medals to 11 people key to the Indigenous Defense Submarine Program, including some team members publicly named for the first time.

Tsai on Wednesday awarded 22 people for their contribution to national defense in a ceremony marking one of her last acts in office before the transfer of power to Lai on Monday.

The list of the submarine project’s members who received honors included Huang, Ministry of National Defense counselor Vice Admiral Shao Wei-yang (邵維揚), Naval Shipbuilding Development Center head Ku Chih-chung (顧志中) and center chief engineer Tsao Chih-tao (曹智韜).

They additionally included CSBC chairman Cheng Wen-lon, general manager Wei Cheng-ssu (魏正賜), deputy general manager Tsai Kun-tsun (蔡坤宗), deputy section head Lo Chih-hung (羅志宏), factory manager Liu Ssu-wei (柳思巍) and special assistant to the chairman Kao Wen-kuei (高文魁), as well as National Chungshan Institute Sheng Lung project director Sun Chun-ching (孫春青).

Sun headed the Sheng Lung Project of elite engineers who developed the indigenous portion of the submarine and tested its systems, subsystems and equipment.

The project team was also charged with developing equipment whose foreign suppliers unexpectedly dropped out, including torpedo decoys that Turkey declined to supply after China intervened.

新聞來源:TAIPEI TIMES

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