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Babcock starts construction of first Type 31 frigate for Royal Navy.

| 2022

According to a PR published by Babcock on April 27, 2022, the company has started construction of the first of five Royal Navy Type 31 frigates, HMS Venturer, at its Rosyth facility.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Keel laying ceremony for the future Type 31 frigate HMS Venturer (Picture source: Babcock)

After cutting the first steel on the program in September 2021, the traditional keel-laying event formally recognized the start of the build, including placing a specially commissioned coin under the keel. On completion of the ship, the coin will be presented to the Captain and crew.

The ceremony was held in the new build hall, the Venturer Building, which forms part of a £60 million investment program, on top of an additional £100 million over the last ten years.

The fully covered hall will house two frigates for uninterrupted, parallel assembly and will support increased productivity gains through improved access to the platforms and digital connectivity.

All of this underpins Rosyth’s shipbuilding capabilities and maximizes the benefits of state-of-the-art engineering infrastructure and digital innovation.

About Type 31 frigate

The Type 31 frigate or Inspiration class, formerly known as the Type 31e frigate or General Purpose Frigate (GPF), is a planned class of frigate intended to enter service with the United Kingdom's Royal Navy in the 2020s alongside the submarine-hunting Type 26 frigate. Designed by Babcock International, it is also marketed under the name Arrowhead 140 and was based on the hull of the Iver Huitfeldt-class frigate.

Type 31 is a general-purpose frigate with a displacement of 5700 tonnes and a length of 138.7 m (455 ft). The ship is equipped with 4 x Rolls Royce/MTU 20V 8000 M71 (8.2-MW) diesel engines, 4 x Rolls Royce/MTU 16V 2000 M41B (900kW) generators, a MAN Alpha VBS Mk 5 CP propeller, two shafts, and a CODAD. It can reach the maximum speed of 28 knots and has an endurance of 9,000 nautical miles.

Core requirements of the Type 31e frigate include a hangar and a flight deck for Wildcat or a ten-tonne helicopter operated by a crew of around 100 with space for 40 more personnel.

The frigates will be armed with one 57 mm Mk 110 main gun, two 40 mm Mk 4 secondary guns, four 7.62 mm General purpose machine guns, and four 7.62 mm miniguns.

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