Dutch ASW Frigates to be in Service by 2029
Royal Netherlands Navy published an article on its website to provide the most updated information about the programme. The command underlined that the frigates would have space for two innovations: a laser cannon and the anti-torpedo torpedo in the development phase.
Dutch Defence Secretary of State, Christophe van der Maat, signed the contracts for the construction of the ships in July. Dutch Damen Shipyard will build them, and Thales will supply the integrated radar and fire control system. Two ships will be delivered to the Dutch Royal Navy, while the others will be to the Belgian Navy. The ASW frigates replace ageing 30-year-old Multipurpose (M) frigates of both countries.
The new ships will be equipped with sensors to detect submarines. This includes a Hull Mounted Sonar (HMS), a Low-Frequency Active Passive Sonar (LFAPS) and a communication system to receive the signals from sonar buoys. The frigate will monitor the water surface against irregularities to detect periscopes.
The adjustments have resulted in the ASWF being 144 meters long - 8 meters longer than initially intended. The vessels will reach the intended speed thanks to an optimal hull shape. The ship will have space for a FRISC or a larger unmanned surface vehicle (USV).
As an advantage of automation and mechanisation, the frigate will operate with 117 crew; however, it will be reduced to 110 in future. Room for innovation