Following the publication of the National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSbS), Babcock has released details on its design for the Type 31e frigate at DSEI this week.
A design the company say is focused on providing a reconfigurable platform, the Babcock Arrowhead 120 design is likely to compete against BMT Group for the Type 31e contract.
Arrowhead’s, ‘adaptable configuration’ acknowledges operational roles will change through the life of the ship with multiple mission bays incorporated into the design allowing for rapid reconfiguration and re-role to meet changing operational needs.
Babcock said they have been advancing operational and data analysis technologies at a rapid pace.
“Arrowhead is cleverly designed to reduce through life costs by embedding key innovations such as real time equipment health monitoring during the build enabling information to be collected during deployment on the fitness of its systems to inform future service and maintenance arrangements.”
With the vessel able to accommodate a variety of equipment choices and with flexibility at the centre of the design philosophy Arrowhead can be deployed for a broad range of roles from low threat security operations to task force deployments.
Babcock say that the Arrowhead design lends itself equally to either a single build strategy, or a cross–site build strategy bringing together modules – an approach used for aircraft carrier assembly at Rosyth.
Craig Lockhart, Managing Director Naval Marine, Babcock said:
“Arrowhead is a game changing general purpose frigate for modern navies. Optimising Through Life Support costs is at the very core of the principles of Arrowhead’s design and build methodology, all balanced against the ability to deliver the required capability.
In focusing Arrowhead’s development around a sustainable and capable design that will help to keep any fleet ‘mission ready’, Babcock has drawn upon its significant experience in vessel design and support for global clients.”
The 120m Arrowhead is an exciting addition to Babcock’s portfolio of ships. The most recent build example being the Samuel Beckett Class OPVs that Babcock is building for the Irish Naval Service at its Appledore facility in North Devon.
The FTSE company has extensive experience in providing critical naval design services, equipment, in-service support and training in the UK as well as in countries such as Australia, Canada, South Korea, Spain and New Zealand.