Surface Warfare Missile, Torpedo Part of $276 Million Upgrade of Finnish Hamina-class Missile Crafts

  • Our Bureau
  • 11:10 PM, December 20, 2017
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Surface Warfare Missile, Torpedo Part of $276 Million Upgrade of Finnish Hamina-class Missile Crafts
Finland’s Hamina-class fast attack craft are currently armed with RBS-15 anti-ship missiles, Umkhonto air-defense missiles and a 57mm gun; the upgrade will add a torpedo weapon system. (Image: Finnish Defense Force)

The Finnish Defense Minister Jussi Niinistö has approved contracts worth $276 million (EUR 223 million) to upgrade Hamina-class fast attack missile crafts. As part of upgrade, a torpedo weapon system will be procured from Saab.

The Finnish Defence Forces' Logistics Command received a mandate to sign a contract with Patria Aviation Ltd. which will bear the principle responsibility for the upgrade, the Finnish Ministry of Defense said in a statement Tuesday.

To acquire capabilities in line with the Defence Policy Report is a part of the naval defence development programme; the upgrade of the Hamina-class FAC will ensure sufficient naval defence readiness in the 2020s after the decommissioning of Rauma class FAC and before the Squadron 2020 corvettes have been taken into use. 

The goal of the upgrade is to secure the service life of Hamina-class vessels until 2035, extend the independent operating time of vessels and improve anti-submarine warfare and self-protection capabilities. The ship class will be equipped with the Surface Warfare Missile 2020 system, to be chosen in 2018. The surface-to-surface missile batteries and Squadron 2020 corvettes will be equipped with the same type of missile.

The lightweight torpedo weapon system to be purchased has been designed bearing in mind the coastal conditions of the Baltic Sea, rich in islands; it represents the most up-to-date technology for underwater surveillance and warfare. The procurement of the lightweight torpedo system has been coordinated with the similar procurement by the Swedish Försvarets Materielverket (FMV); their system deliveries are scheduled to take place in 2023-2025. A loan agreement on the torpedo systems will be concluded with the FMV for the years 2019-2023.

Defence materiel cooperation is a way to implement the defence administration’s strategic goals regarding security of supply and to deepen Nordic cooperation. A user training which will be carried out by the Swedish Navy and the lending of sub-systems, delivered by the FMV, for practising purposes are included in the agreement; this will ensure that the vessels and personnel will be ready for operational activities without delay when the upgrade of the Hamina-class FAC is completed. 

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