HMS Duncan, currently flagship of Standing NATO Maritime Group 2, recently led a meeting of NATO vessels in the Aegean Sea.
Duncan, in company with the Turkish frigate TCG Gemlik and Spanish frigate ESPS Victoria, met up with German frigate FGS Bayern and Greek naval vessels for a passing exercise, known as PASSEX.
Bayern, flagship of Task Unit 1, was accompanied by the Hellenic Navy destroyer HS Adrias, fast-attack craft HS Mykonios and gunboat HS Armatolos.
Recently HMS Duncan sailed through the Bosphorus Straight and into the Black Sea, a move described by Russian media recently as ‘clear provocation’. HMS Duncan is leading Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 ‘(SNMG2), what NATO call an ‘Immediate Reaction Force’. The destroyer left Portsmouth Naval Base in early January resume the role after a three-month stint in charge last year.
SNMG2 is a ‘multinational, integrated maritime force’ – made up of vessels from various allied nations, training and operating together as a single team – that is permanently available to NATO to perform a wide range of tasks, from participating in exercises to crisis response and real world operational missions.
Last year, HMS Duncan visited the Ukrainian port of Odessa in the first visit by a Royal Navy ship in eight years.
The Type 45 destroyer is the most advanced air-defence vessel in the world. So powerful is the vessels SAMPSON radar, from its position in Dublin Port it could monitor the air traffic over the entire island of Ireland. The US Naval War College has suggested that the SAMPSON radar is capable of tracking 1,000 objects the size of a cricket ball travelling at three times the speed of sound
The UK’s National Audit Office reported that, during an “intensive attack”, a single Type 45 could simultaneously track, engage and destroy more targets than five Type 42 destroyers operating together.