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Flexible Support
Ships achieved
full operational
capability in 2008
and Absalon was
later deployed to
the Horn of Africa.
(possibly to be named the Peder Skram off Svalbard (Spitzbergen) following the Swedish Navy’s submarines appears to
class) being built by the Odense yard at ostentatious patrols in the same waters by be in the hands of Singapore and Finland
Lindø for commissioning from 2011. elements of the Russian Northern Fleet. who have both expressed an interest in
These will have a displacement of 5850tons Submarines could add much to force the programme.
with Terma C-Flex combat management projection but currently only Sweden Norway might be interested, despite
system (also used in the Absalons), Dutch and Norway operate them. The Swedish withdrawing from the original Viking
sensors (Thales Smart-L and Apar) with government seems to be seriously Nordic submarine project some five
Saab Ceros weapon control radar. considering abolishing its submarine arm. years ago. A concept definition study has
Hull-mounted, variable-depth and It currently operates three Gotland (A19) recently been completed into replacements
towed sonars will make these frigates and two Södermanland (A17) class boats, for the six Ula class and plans exist for a
very versatile and the weapon suite will which are among the most advanced project definition study to begin in 2009.
include Standard 2MR area defence non-nuclear submarines in the world. Norway is determined to maintain
missiles supported by RIM-162 Evolved The threat seems to have been largely its tradition of using smaller surface
SeaSparrow Missiles (ESSM) and Harpoon influenced by neighbouring Denmark’s combatants having decided, after much
II anti-ship missiles, the latter having a abolition of its submarine arm. discussion and to the surprise of some
limited land-attack capability, as well as a The fate of Sweden’s submarine observers, to accept the six Skjold class
127mm gun. force appears to depend largely on surface effect ship fast attack craft. They
They can also accept up to five Stanflex foreign support for the A26 (formerly will replace the 20-year-old Hauk class,
weapon containers, four on the weapons Viking) programme for the design and which are likely to be sold as patrol boats.
deck and one at B-position, and will have development of the next generation of Finland has disposed of two Helsinki
deck space for four TEU containers. They submarines. Consequently, the survival of class fast attack craft to Croatia but the
will be able to embark and operate a heavy
(20tonne) helicopter as well as unmanned
aerial vehicles allowing them to provide a
global expeditionary capability that might
be emulated by many navies of a similar
size, or even their larger cousins.
By contrast, Norway’s 5290ton Fridjoft
Nansen class frigates do not make the
most of their Aegis weapon systems,
although based on the Spanish Alvaro de
Bazán class with their SM-2 area defence
missile systems.
The Norwegian ships have only the
ESSM local area air defence missile and
a 76mm Oto Melara Super Rapid gun;
although, the Kongsberg NSM surface-
to-surface missiles are reported to have a
better land-attack capability than Harpoon
Block II. One of these frigates has recently A concept definition study has recently been completed into replacements for the Royal
been used on a ‘show-the-flag’ exercise Norwegian Navy’s six Ula class submarines.
42 Warship Technology January 2009
WT_Jan09_p41+42+44.indd 42 12/23/08 2:27:54 AM
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