Pictured edging out of her dry dock at Barrow-in-Furness, today preparations began to get the Royal Navy's latest submarine water-ready ahead of its first trip in the sea.
She has been ten years in the making but now the 318ft long, 7,400 tonne nuclear-powered HMS Audacious took her first trip in water on Friday, April 28, during a floating out ceremony in Cumbria. She will then start her testing program, before leaving Barrow for sea trials next year.
Part of a £1billion project, Audacious is the fourth out of seven astute class submarines commissioned by the Government to set a new standard in weapons.
When armed with Tomahawk cruise missiles, she will be capable of striking targets up to 750 miles from the coast with pinpoint accuracy.
Easy does it! The hugely-proportioned HMS Audacious was taken out of its indoor ship building complex at BAE Systems today
Powerful: The 318ft long, 7,400 tonne nuclear-powered HMS Audacious has cost taxpayers more than £1billion but along with her sisters, sets a new standard in weapons load and stealth
Audacious in numbers: The giant ship is capable of striking targets with pinpoint accuracy from 750 miles away - the equivalent of aiming for a target in Spain from Plymouth, Devon
The Tomahawk cruise missiles she carries are claimed to have an accuracy of just a few metres over a range of within 1,240km, giving Artful the ability to support ground forces anywhere in the world.
More than 39,000 acoustic tiles mask the vessel's sonar signature, meaning she slips through the seas with less noise than a baby dolphin.
Yet her sonar is said to be so powerful it can detect ships leaving harbour in New York City from a listening point below the waters of the English Channel, 3,000 nautical miles away.
Credit to Dailymail.co
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