Australia's highly trained submarine force is facing serious problems as a combination of maintenance cycles and personnel shortages have recently sidelined as many as five of its six Collins-class submarines for brief periods. Despite a requirement for 670 personnel, only 430 were available for submarine service last year. During May 2009, it was reported that HMAS Farncomb was the sole remaining Australian submarine on-hand for immediate sea duty. Sister submarines Waller, Sheehan, Rankin, Dechaineux, and Collins, pictured here, were temporarily unavailable as tensions rose in the Pacific region. These challenges came just as Australia's Defence Ministry released an important forward-looking report that lays out the nation's future defense projections, including a planned doubling of its submarine force to include the acquisition of 12 domestically built, advanced new-generation submarines for use in the 2030s and beyond.