Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Origin: United Kingdom
Parent System: Vanguard
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): 1993
Total Production: 4
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Description: The Vanguard-class ballistic submarines (SSBN) provide the United Kingdom strategic nuclear deterrent. These submarines are powered by a single PWR2 nuclear reactor. They are armed with 16 Trident II ballistic missiles carrying up to 12 nuclear warheads (NWH), nevertheless typically they carry only 6 NHWs. The Vanguard-class submarines have 4 533mm torpedo tubes to launch Spearfish torpedoes for self-defense purposes.
The Vanguard fleet is always connected to Britain's authorities in order to keep their nuclear weapons under firm political control. Overall Vanguard submarines performance is equivalent to US Ohio class submarines but with fewer displacement and number of ballistic missiles. The Vanguard submarines will remain as the cornerstone of the British nuclear deterrent policy well into the 21st century.
The Royal Navy ordered 4 Vanguard-class submarines starting in 1993 and ending in 1999 with the commissioning of HMS Vengeance. The HMS Vanguard achieved operational capability in 1993 and since then it has become the cornerstone of the British nuclear deterrent.
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