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UK: New pictures released of future Type 26 frigate HMS Cardiff.

| Naval News Navy 2024

According to information published by BAE Systems on March 19, 2024, the Govan and Scotstoun shipyards, operated by BAE Systems Maritime, received a visit from a delegation led by Ambassador Tore Hattrem of the Norwegian Embassy in London. Thanks to this, we were able to see the latest advances in the construction of the frigate HMS Cardiff.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Norwegian Ambassador in UK Tore Hattrem visiting the shipyard of Royal Navy's Type 26 frigate HMS Cardiff. (Picture source: BAE Systems)

The focus of this visit was to assess the advancements in naval defense, particularly the progress of the Type 26 frigate, known for its Anti-Submarine Warfare capabilities. The delegation's visit centered around examining the ongoing construction and development of the Type 26 frigates. Notably, the delegation reviewed the progress on four of these ships, including HMS Glasgow and HMS Cardiff, which are part of the fleet being built at the shipyards.

Type 26

The Type 26 frigate, known as the City-class frigate, represents a new class of frigates being developed for the UK's Royal Navy, with specialized versions also underway for the Australian and Canadian naval forces.

This initiative, dubbed the Global Combat Ship, was initiated by the British Ministry of Defence to partially replace the Royal Navy's thirteen Type 23 frigates and to support international naval capabilities.

Its main function is to execute advanced anti-submarine warfare tasks, along with providing air defence and engaging in general-purpose naval activities. This marks the first instance since the pre-Second World War era where Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom have shared a naval platform, echoing the collaborative spirit of the Tribal-class destroyer era.

The project kicked off in 1998 as the Future Surface Combatant program, which evolved by 2010 into the Global Combat Ship program following a significant design contract awarded to BAE Systems Maritime – Naval Ships.

The design phase made substantial progress by early 2015, setting the stage for the commencement of manufacturing and the expected delivery of the first Type 26 frigate by 2023, though the first ship's commissioning was later adjusted to 2026.

In a move to modernize their fleets, Australia announced the acquisition of a modified Type 26 design for its Royal Navy, while Canada, through a contract with Lockheed Martin Canada, plans to create a fleet based on the Type 26 design, emphasizing versatility and modern warfare capabilities.

Technical data

The Type 26 frigate displaces approximately 6,900 tonnes and measures 149.9 meters in length with a beam of 20.8 meters. It has a designed top speed exceeding 26 knots (>48 km/h) and a range of about 7,000 nautical miles (13,000 km). The ship is built to accommodate a core crew of 157, with the capacity to house up to 208 personnel for different mission requirements.

For anti-submarine warfare, the Type 26 is equipped with Ultra Electronics Type 2150 bow sonar and Sonar 2087 towed array systems. Air defense capabilities include the Type 997 Artisan 3D search radar and Sea Ceptor (CAMM) air-defense missiles, with 48 vertical launching system (VLS) canisters and an additional 24 Mark 41 "strike-length VLS" cells.

Surface warfare armaments consist of a NATO-standard BAE 5-inch, 62-calibre Mark 45 naval gun, two Phalanx Close-In Weapon Systems (CIWS), two 30mm DS30M Mark 2 Automated Small Calibre Guns, and provisions for launching the Anglo-French FC/ASW anti-ship missile.

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