HMS Astute on the degaussing range at Loch Long on the Clyde.
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HMS Astute is the lead ship of her class of nuclear-powered submarines. Astute was ordered from GEC's Marconi Marine (now BAE Systems Submarine Solutions) on 17 March 1997. She was laid down on 31 January 2001, 100 years to the day since the keel was laid down for Holland 1, the first Royal Navy submarine. The vessel was built at BAE's submarine facility in Barrow-in-Furness and was launched on 8 June 2007 by HRH The Duchess of Cornwall.
The 7,400-tonne Astute’s nuclear reactor will not need to be refuelled during the boat's 25 year service. Since the submarine can purify water and air, she will be able to circumnavigate the planet without resurfacing. The main limit is that the submarine will only be able to carry three months' supply of food for 98 crew. Astute will carry Tomahawk cruise missiles.