HMS Defender recently departed Portsmouth for intensive training to prepare for HMS Queen Elizabeth’s ‘Carrier Strike Group 21’ deployment.

In a news release that you can read here, the Royal Navy say that Defender is earmarked for upcoming missions in the Mediterranean, Middle East and Asia-Pacific region on HMS Queen Elizabeth’s Carrier Strike Group 21 mission.

Commanding Officer of HMS Defender, Commander Vince Owen, was quoted as saying:

“It is a great feeling to be able to take HMS Defender back to sea after this period alongside for maintenance. Despite the additional challenges caused by COVID-19, the achievement of my ship’s company, BAE and our other industry partners to be able to return us to sea is hugely impressive and another important milestone in our generation for deployment.”

The Type 45 was in extensive top-to-bottom maintenance, including capability upgrades being fitted, a fresh coat of paint and routine upkeep on the exterior of the SAMPSON and S1850M radars.

5 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Every time I see the back end of a T45, with its empty hangar roof. I keep thinking that would be a good place for a BAe Mk110 weapon system.


Unfortunately that space is reserved for the sauna and plunge pool!

Last edited 20 days ago by Herodotus

Thats Fwd where the reserved space for the VLS is ….which is currently a multi gym.


Unfortunately the hoofing great air search radar and the HF whips aerials precludes having anything up their.

You could always go up there and get a tan from the inside out !


No thanks…too much X band in my younger days…not much left to cook!

Sceptical Richard

Hi Gunbuster. The Italian Horizons have a similar setup for their L band radars and yet manage to mount a 3” Strales mount and associated X band fire control radar on top of their hangars. I’m sure they’ve done their EMC studies to demonstrate safe operation?


Yes, type 45 is unprotected from that quadrant at short range. I guess RN realized that and was the reason for the Phalanx balconies 🙂

Andy P

Just pleased that the RN is using HF, it has its place. Now if only CW was still an option….

Only kidding (well sort of), its not the quickest form of comms and prone to ‘skill fade’.


HF has never really gone away. the new waveforms and digital radios have given it a major resurgence. Cost is also a driver. The RN had an all singing SCOT system but as it was PFI it was costing a fortune when data and bandwidth limits where crossed( Imagine a Mobile phone concract x shed loads for exceeding your data limit!) HF then was revisited and updated. So data links, Email, data, voice all came to the fore again. OK its got its sporadic E issues etc and SATCOM remains quick and easy but its still an important thing to… Read more »

Andy P

Don’t know what its like on the skimmers now that the dabbers are doing the tactical comms but on boats (where its still RO’s) they’re not taught properly and the skill fade is massive. Not many (if any) ‘old skool’ morse freaks any more.

Dave Wolfy

I watched a Royal Signals operator writing a message from what I thought was noise.
Morse-monkeys, amazing.


Having trained as a RO for the merchant navy I have seen some pretty amusing stuff ….. one character I knew could read the Daily Telegraph at the same time. I’m not sure if that says anything about the Torygraph. After a while it almost becomes subliminal, especially if you are really familiar with the sender!

Last edited 19 days ago by Herodotus
Andy P

That’s hard core, I found it easiest to ‘switch off’ and not try and read what you were writing, basically disengaging the brain and let it go in the lug and down the arm to pen. At least when you were working at the top end of your ability.


I wasn’t particularly good at it…I found the 20 words a minute (RX) quite challenging! The old hands said ‘with experience its like driving a car’….after a while you are simply not thinking about driving…it’s all automatic. But, 50 years later, I can still read it if it’s not too fast.

Andy P

I think I passed out at 20WPM although I was doing 22 on a good day. Morse was very much on the way out by then though (late 80’s) so didn’t progress, rather I regressed through lack of practice. When I got round to ‘flashing light’ I found that very easy as the speeds were a lot slower.

Like you, while I’m familiar with the characters, I’m nowhere near as quick. Its been suggested I do ‘ham’ but I’ve no interest, each to their own.

Paul T

Yes,if there is Space Available its a Shame not to use it – a Strales 76mm would be another option,or to keep the Bean Counters Happy a Starstreak Mount to save using a Precious Aster Missile on a Drone or Helicopter.

Rob N

They should replace the Phalanx with the 40mm mounts as on the T31. Also replace the main gun with the 57mm as on the T31. Install the 16 extra VLS tubes and fill them with quad packed Sea ceptor and more Aster 30 (an extra 8 Aster and the rest Sea Ceptor) Also add Martel to the 39mm mounts. Also make the Sea Ceptor anti-surface capable. Plus upgrade the Aster 30 programming to bring it in line with the Aster 30 1 SAM as used on land. This would give the T45 an ABM capability. that should do the trick…… Read more »


Has HMS Defender had the engine upgrade work done yet ?
Thanks Ian


Yes she has had her engine upgrade and signals upgrade done a few years ago.

Paul T

I think you mean HMS Dauntless – she has had her Engine Upgrade Work Completed,information is scarce but is due for Sea Trials shortly AFAIK.


I hope so!! This CSG21 deployment is all about prestige. We can’t have our ships progressing around the world, waving the flag and demonstrating the ability to break down all over the place.

Captain P Wash

Well if it’s good enough for Russia !

Captain P Wash

Why, what was wrong with her engines ?


They had those issues in the Gulf with the warm water being too much for the intercooler. All six need cutting into and engine work done, not sure what the status of that is.

The Type 45 engine problems – it’s not the Royal Navy’s fault (

Meirion X

HMS Dauntless is the only T45 that’s had the new diesel gens. HMS Daring in next to get them.


Bad news on HMS Daring she is to replace HMS Bristol has a training ship ,hard to believe as she is a modern ship .

Meirion X

HMS Daring has just had a refit, and is in a dry dock at the moment.

So early April Fools then😅

Last edited 20 days ago by Meirion X

Could someone please enlighten me – what is the current status of the 6 T45s?

The Artist Formerly Known As Los Pollos Chicken

Had the pleasure of a tour of HMS Duncan few years back whilst it was in its spiritual home port. What struck me was the size of the hanger plenty space what struck me even more though unfortunately was the officer I asked about why it wasn’t kitted up with the harpoon launcher tubes looked at me blankly and didn’t seem to know what a harpoon missile was 😂🙈 .

However that being said these vessels are world class and with the engine fix should all be hunky dory . Excellent news Defender is ready to go 👍🏻


‘This is a warship not a bloody Whaler’


Anyone know what capability upgrades she has received?

Ian M.

Hmm, Destroyer training: chair, check; whip, check;…..Hup!


Great stuff, anyone know which other T45 and which of the T23s will be joining in?
Would be great to know what the upgrades comprise, but I suppose that’s a hopeless wish…

Paul T

The other T45 is HMS Diamond,the 23’s should be Richmond and Kent.