The success of the Virginia-class submarine program has been attributed in large part to the effort to absorb and apply lessons learned from the Seawolf program. Following close on the heels of that predecessor, the Virginia’s principal players in both government and industry were determined to have a better outcome in terms of cost and schedule performance. They had the advantage of recent, firsthand experience to draw upon from a project that had originally involved a 29-ship class but was foreshortened to just 3.
Likewise, the United Kingdom, now embarking on the replacement of its four Vanguard-class submarines, is in a position to profit from what happened during the Astute program. Australia, after what will be more than a decade-long hiatus from submarine shipbuilding, is contemplating a replacement for its Collins class.