Thursday, 9 July 2015

Singapore to get eight new warships

Tackling threats: Ivy Ng (on platform), wife of Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen, launching Singapore’s first littoral mission vessel, the ‘Independence’. — The Straits Times / Asia News Network

SINGAPORE has launched the first of eight new warships that will sharpen the navy’s firepower to tackle new maritime threats.

Independence, a littoral mission vessel, will go through sea trials from next year after its combat systems are installed.

It is expected to be battle-ready by 2017 while the others are expected to become operational by 2020.

Singapore Unveils New Patrol Vessels as Regional Tensions Rise

Singapore’s navy is preparing to take on more unconventional missions with a new fleet of patrol boats, as territorial tensions rise in the South China Sea and demands for search and rescue missions increase in the aftermath of airplane disasters in the region.

The first of eight Littoral Mission Vessels was launched this week and will be fully operational by 2017, according to the Ministry of Defence. The ships were designed and built by a unit of Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd.

Singapore joins other nations in the region in its focus on maritime security, bolstering fleets of coastal combat and patrol vessels to deter piracy, illegal fishing and human trafficking. Countries like Indonesia and the Philippines are also looking to buy more planes for surveillance flights.

Singapore selects VL Mica for new Littoral Mission Vessels
An artist's impression of the RSN's LMV in its final configuration. (Singapore Ministry of Defence)

The Republic of Singapore Navy's (RSN's) new Littoral Mission Vessels (LMVs) will be equipped with MBDA's Vertical Launch (VL) Mica air-defence system, the service has confirmed.

The missiles will be deployed via a 12-cell vertical launching system (VLS) located on the forward section of the vessel, said Lieutenant Colonel Chew Chun-Chau who heads the RSN's LMV project office. He was speaking to IHS Jane's on the sidelines of a media briefing to mark the launch of first-of-class LMV Independence .

"The Mica system will be the platform's defence against a wide range of airborne threats, including hostile aircraft and missiles," said Lt Col Chew.

Singapore Navy Launches Locally made Littoral Mission Vessel

The Singapore Navy today launched the first of eight locally made littoral warships for multi-mission applications.

The new Littoral Mission Vessels (LMVs) named as Independence will eventually replace the existing Fearless-class Patrol Vessels, which have been in service for 20 years, local media reported today.

These LMVs have various customizable mission modules, including medical containers and unmanned systems, that can be reconfigured to respond to different circumstances and roles from counter-piracy, mine clearing to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations.


Singapore launches first Independence-class Littoral Mission Vessel
The RSN's first-of-class LMV, Independence, during its launch ceremony on 3 July 2015. Source: IHS/Ridzwan Rahmat

Singapore has launched the first of eight Littoral Mission Vessels (LMVs) on order for the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN).

The vessel, Independence , was launched on 3 July at ST Marine's shipyard in Benoi in a ceremony presided over by Singapore's defence minister Ng Eng Hen.

Singapore's Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) signed a contract for the LMVs in January 2013, with the ships replacing the RSN's 11 Fearless-class patrol boats (which have been in service since the mid-1990s). The LMV has been jointly designed by Saab Kockums AB and ST Marine, and is being built in Singapore by ST Marine. Singapore's Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) is the overall manager and systems integrator for the programme.

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