Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Royal Navy ships to be boosted with new decoy launchers

UK security will be bolstered through a new contract worth £135 million that will equip the Royal Navy with decoy launchers. This is a significant step towards countering missile and drone threats and ensuring the long-term availability of warships.

The Trainable Decoy Launcher technology will enhance the protection of Royal Navy ships and sailors, which will further strengthen the Navy’s ability to defend Britain’s interests worldwide, including the Red Sea.

The UK’s fleet is facing increased threats from new missile and drone technology, and the latest decoy launchers will help counter this. It can provide optimized maneuverability for defending warships without the need to alter course.

The new system incorporates high-end technology and will be manufactured at the Systems Engineering & Assessment Ltd (SEA) site in North Devon and Chess’s facilities in Sussex. This innovative development is expected to sustain up to 150 jobs and help boost the UK’s economy.

“In a time of global instability, it is vital we protect the Royal Navy in the best possible way to ensure national security,” Minister for Defence Procurement James Cartlidge said. “With recent attacks towards HMS Diamond and HMS Richmond in the Red Sea, it’s crucial our sailors have the latest technology to best defend themselves and the fleet. The new Trainable Decoy Launcher technology is an improvement on speed and agility and highlights more excellent work from UK companies in backing UK defense.”

The Trainable Decoy Launcher contract will result in the installation of a new trainable countermeasure launcher system on Type 26 and Type 31 frigates and Type 45 destroyers. This system uses improved decoy launcher technology that allows for the quick deployment of decoys against modern missile threats without the need for the vessel to maneuver itself. The launcher is capable of firing a range of countermeasures, such as chaff, flares, and ‘corner reflector’ rounds, to target hostile missiles.

The contract, procured by Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S), was awarded to SEA and will see a fully UK-designed and built solution. SEA has partnered with Chess Dynamics and Frazer-Nash Consultancy (FNC) to deliver the product.

“Being awarded a contract of this nature demonstrates the Royal Navy’s trust in SEA, which is based on our proven track record of delivering, upgrading, and sustaining high-end maritime capabilities over many years,” said Richard Flitton, Managing Director of SEA. “The knowledge and maritime domain expertise within our UK-based team has enabled our long-standing partnership with the Royal Navy, and we’re delighted that this will allow us to support the UK’s defensive capabilities against modern and complex naval threats.”