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Submarine HMS Södermanland – during overhaul

Oceanic range submarines

Oceanic is Saab’s submarine cornerstone. Based on a revolutionary, forward-thinking design and more than 100 years’ of experience.

Key features

Our design and production philosophy -modularity - are securing the possibility to adapt the submarines original design to customer demands and for the life time of the vessel.
By balancing and minimizing the complete range of the submarines’ signatures, Saab’s submarines are extremely difficult to be detected by enemies.
The Royal Swedish Navy sets unique demands. Therefore, Saab’s submarines have undergone employed realistic, close-range, full-scale shock tests using depth charge and mine explosions, while having the complete operational crew on board.

Examples of submarine models in the oceanic range are the Södermanland-class, the Gotland-class and the – currently under production - Blekinge-class (A26) submarines.

Keeping the sea safe – acting undetected

Throughout our history we have continuously developed our series of submarines, based on our core Oceanic segment. Its modular design and production method allows the submarine to accommodate a larger and more versatile suite of weapons, various crew sizes, and highly efficient energy systems.

The Oceanic segment encompasses submarines of similar size and capacity to the Blekinge-class (A26) submarine, ordered for the Royal Swedish Navy.

The Blekinge-class (A26) Submarine

Saab is building two submarines of Blekinge-class (A26) for the Royal Swedish Navy. It is the world’s most modern submarine programme.

The submarines will be powered by conventional diesel-electric propulsion machinery and equipped with the Kockums Stirling AIP (air-independent propulsion) system. The silent Stirling system contributes to the Blekinge-class submarines extreme stealth. The Blekinge-class submarines boosts all the traditional operational capabilities of a submarine and is also a strong intelligence-gathering platform within the wider defence network. Its proven modular design ensures availability, with efficient through-life upgrades and adaptations, and low life cycle costs. You can always adapt the Blekinge-class submarine to the mission in hand.

Multi Mission Portal™

Perhaps the most unique A26 design feature is its Multi Mission Portal™, for the launch and retrieval of diverse mission payloads such as manned and unmanned vehicles. The Blekinge-class submarine will be a strong intelligence-gathering platform within the wider defense network.

A26 divers
A26 tower underwater
A26 submarine

Saab’s evolutionary design means that the Blekinge-class submarine is built on experience from previous generations of submarines and new technological development. The Gotland-class submarines HMS Gotland and HMS Uppland have undergone comprehensive mid-life upgrades. This is our evolutionary way of creating a new breed of submarines, by adding new capabilities to already renowned underwater vessels – a century of experience continues to pave the way for our future submarine programme.

Mid-Life Upgrade (MLU) of The Gotland-class submarine

The relaunch of HMS Uppland took place June 19, 2019. Two of the Gotland-class submarines have now concluded comprehensive mid-life upgrades (MLU) and are equipped to face the challenges of tomorrow.

Gotland-class submarines upgraded - how?

The Gotland-class submarines HMS Gotland and HMS Uppland have finished their mid-life upgrades (MLU) — making sure tomorrows challenges are met. The changes result in increased performance, improved stealth capabilities as well as increased navigation, combat, comms and ship control capabilities.

Many systems used in the vessels’ MLU are paving the way for Blekinge-class (A26) submarine cutting edge capabilities. This makes the Gotland-class a step in the evolutinonary chain of submarines. See pictures below and find out what modifications have been made.

HMS Gotland Updated
HMS Gotland - A26

The underwater advantage

Some of the key characteristics of Saab’s Oceanic segment submarines are:

Underwater advantage sumarines


Sweden has a long history of designing silent submarines and extreme stealth is at the heart of Saab submarines. They are designed to counter all known physical threats, surveillance methods and cyber warfare techniques.

Stealth is a key characteristic, tested in the cold war and the most demanding environment and has then undergone substantial development to ensure low, controlled and balanced signatures.

Shock Resistance

Our submarines are designed to withstand significant shock loads from underwater explosions, primarily from mines and depth charges. Shock resistance is a prerequisite for submarines designed to operate in a sea infested of mines. The Royal Swedish Navy has demanding operational conditions and, since the 1950s, has employed realistic, close-range,
full-scale shock tests using depth charge and mine explosions, while having the complete operational crew on board.

Evolutionary Design

Our submarines are based on several generations of evolutionary design. Building on more than 100 years' experience, 7 submarine classes have been delivered across 3 continents.

Stirling AIP

Stirling engine development over time Saab

Since the 1980s, Stirling AIP has been proven to be a mature and robust technology. AIP mode enables the submarine to operate for an extended time, without breaking the surface for snorting and charging the batteries by the diesel engines. The AIP system has been delivered to several export customers and has attained over 30 years of operational service, as well as several tens of thousands of running hours on board submarines. Today, all Swedish submarines are equipped with Stirling AIP.

Combat Power

Our submarines ensures maximum combat power thanks a flexible payload space. The flexible payload space can accommodate many different types of weapon loads and other cargo such as UAVs and diver's equipment. The submarines are equipped with quick launch and reload capabilities of weapons.

Intelligence and Combat Management 

The submarines are equipped with an extensive integrated sensor suite for monitoring and analysing multiple types of data, such as geographical, hydroacoustic and electromagnetic.

Total situational awareness and immediate response capability are imperative capabilities for submarine operations. The Combat Management System (CMS) is essential for the complete situational awareness overview.

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