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Failures and technical issues on two different Danish Navy frigates.

| Naval News Navy 2024

According to information published by Olfi on April 2, 2024, during its mission in the Red Sea, the Danish frigate Iver Huitfeldt encountered operational challenges with its weapon and mission systems.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Danish Iver Huitfeldt class frigates Niels Juel and Iver Huitfeldt. (Picture source: Wikipedia)

The vessel, participating in an international effort to protect maritime cargo traffic from attacks, experienced malfunctions with its active phased array radar and the C-Flex combat management system, critical components produced by Thales Netherlands and the Danish firm Terma, respectively.

These malfunctions were severe enough to temporarily prevent the launch of the RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles (ESSMs), medium-range, surface-to-air missiles crucial for the ship's defense against aerial threats. Additionally, there were reported issues with the ammunition for the ship's 76mm guns being defective on multiple occasions during operations.

These operational difficulties were not only immediate concerns during the Red Sea deployment but were part of longstanding issues known for "years" with little action taken to address them. The Danish Ministry of Defense is said to be conducting an investigation into these issues to understand and rectify the problems faced by the Iver Huitfeldt​​.

The story isn't over yet... on April 4, 2024, the HDMS frigate Niels Juel suffered a missile launcher malfunction during a naval exercise in Denmark's Great Belt Strait, resulting in the closure of shipping lanes and airspace for several hours.

The operational issues faced by the Danish Navy come at a critical time, reflecting broader challenges within the framework of Denmark's ambitious military objectives and its commitments to international security, especially in relation to the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine.

Denmark, as a NATO member, has been actively involved in providing support to Ukraine and ensuring security in the Baltic Sea region in response to Russia's aggression. The Danish government has pledged various forms of military aid to Ukraine, including donating artillery and anti-aircraft missiles to support Ukraine's defense efforts​​. Moreover, Denmark's commitment extends beyond direct military assistance to include efforts to strenghten NATO's eastern flank against potential Russian expansionism.

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