Taiwan is to draw on the experience of an ongoing program to upgrade two of its aging submarines to support a project to build its own submarines, an institute contracted to conduct the programs said yesterday.
Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology officials said in a report prepared for a legislative hearing yesterday that the institute has completed an evaluation of periscope upgrades for the two Chien Lung-class submarines and has begun reviewing a design to upgrade their weapons systems.
That experience will help support the Ministry of National Defense’s indigenous submarine project, the report said.
The report said the institute is discussing a design for the weapons systems of the planned homegrown submarines and other issues with shipbuilder CSBC Corp, Taiwan — the contractor for the nation’s indigenous submarine and the navy’s submarine programs.
A total of NT$2.9 billion (US$95.45 million) is to be budgeted from December last year to December 2020 for the design of the vessels, a ministry report to the legislature on the indigenous submarine and jet trainer programs showed.
Military officials said at yesterday’s hearing that the local submarine program aims to build eight vessels and will still need assistance and technologies from the US.
CSBC said the first indigenous submarine can be built in eight years and enter service with the navy in 10 years after its design is completed.
CSBC chairman Cheng Wen-lon (鄭文隆) said the company, after the completion of the first submarine, could produce one submarine every four years.
Late last month, CSBC and the institute signed a memorandum of understanding with the navy to jointly build submarines for the military.
The first homegrown submarines are to be built within eight years and would be able to be commissioned into service within a decade, the shipbuilder said.
As for the program to upgrade the two Chien Lung-class submarines Taiwan purchased from the Netherlands in the 1980s, the institute said in its report that it would refer to the designs of weapons systems on other naval ships and enlist the help of foreign defense companies to extend the life of the aging submarines.
The program would also rely primarily on domestically manufactured components in an attempt to boost the nation’s defense industry, the report said.
Taiwan has long tried to acquire submarines from other nations with little success because of reluctance to upset China.
Then-US president George W. Bush in 2001 authorized the sale of eight diesel electric submarines to Taiwan, but the deal never came to fruition because of political wrangling in Taiwan and questions over whether the US, which did not produce conventional submarines at the time, could supply the vessels.
Taiwan has four submarines, including two World War II-era boats purchased from the US in the 1970s.
As for the indigenous advanced jet trainer program, designs for the aircraft’s exterior and interior have been completed and an initial review of the design of the aircraft is scheduled for next month, the institute’s report said.
The ministry has allocated a 12-year budget of NT$68.6 billion to build 66 jet trainers, with the first prototype scheduled to be completed by September 2019, the first trial flight to be conducted by June 2020 and the whole fleet of 66 airplanes to be delivered by 2026.
The trainer jet program is estimated to create up to NT$205.8 billion in private investment.
Additional reporting by Chen Wei-han
The majority of parents surveyed in northern Taiwan favor the suspension of all on-site classes at schools from the junior-high level and below amid a surge in domestic COVID-19 infections, parent groups said yesterday. About 84.4 percent of respondents in a survey of 2,912 parents in northern Taiwan, where the outbreak is the most serious, said they supported suspending classes, the Action Alliance on Basic Education, the Taiwan Parents Protect Women and Children Association, and the Taiwan Love Children Association said. The groups distributed questionnaires to parents in New Taipei City, Taipei, Keelung, Taoyuan and Hsinchu city and county from Saturday morning
‘LONE WOLF’: The suspect was difficult to locate, as he did not use a cellphone, did not contact family and often lived in abandoned sites or parks, police said Taipei police on Thursday morning arrested a man accused of numerous burglaries and at least 14 incidents of sexual assault spanning more than 20 years, in what might be the nation’s most notorious crime spree in recent years. Sixty-year-old Tu Ming-lang (涂明朗) — who was yesterday placed in judicial detention, after a judge determined he was a flight risk without a fixed address — faces multiple charges of sexual assault and burglary, police said. A task force comprised of various law enforcement agencies arrested Tu as part of an investigation into an April 28 burglary in Daan District (大安), in which a
ASEAN BATTLEGROUND: Japan and Australia could be drawn into Pacific tensions as China sets its sights on the Diaoyutai Islands and further beyond the first island chain Tensions between China and the US in the Indo-Pacific region are expected to intensify, the National Security Bureau and Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, recommending that Taiwan continue to emphasize its shared values and interests to encourage resistance to Chinese aggression. US commitments in the Indo-Pacific region are expected to continue unabated despite the war in Ukraine, as Beijing takes advantage of the conflict to expand its influence in the region, the agencies said in reports delivered to the legislature’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee on Sunday, ahead of a hearing yesterday on regional developments and trends. Although Russia’s invasion of
ONLINE REPORT: Confirmed cases filling out the online contact tracing report can check a box to indicate that a close contact had received a booster dose, an official said The guidelines for diagnosing COVID-19 have been revised to include people aged 65 or older who test positive with a rapid test that is confirmed by a healthcare worker, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, as it reported 65,794 new local infections. The CECC had first announced the change on Monday, before publishing the new guidelines. Starting today, people aged 65 or older, regardless of whether they are undergoing home quarantine, home isolation or self-disease prevention, can be classified as a confirmed COVID-19 case by a healthcare professional, based on a positive result from an antigen rapid test, said