The launch of the frigate Emilio Bianchi, the tenth and final ship of the FREMM class, took place at the shipyard of Riva Trigoso this week.
The ten Fremm ships were ordered from Fincantieri by the Italian Navy within the framework of an Italian–French cooperative programme coordinated by OCCAR (Organisation Conjointe de Cooperation sur l’Armement), the international organisation for cooperation on armaments.
After the launch, fitting-out activities will continue at the integrated naval shipyard of Muggiano (La Spezia), with delivery scheduled in 2021. The Emilio Bianchi, like her sister-ships, features a high degree of flexibility and is capable of operating in all tactical situations.
With a length of 144 metres and a beam of 19.7 metres, the ship will have a displacement of approximately 6,700 tonnes at full load. She has a top speed of over 27 knots and will be able to accommodate a up to 200 people, including crew and passengers.
The FREMM program stems from the Italian Navy’s requirement to replace the Lupo-class (now all retired) and Maestrale-class frigates (now being decommissioned), both built by Fincantieri in the 1970s.
The ships Carlo Bergamini and Virginio Fasan were delivered in 2013, the Carlo Margottini in 2014, the Carabiniere in 2015, the Alpino in 2016, the Luigi Rizzo in 2017, the Federico Martinengo in 2018, and the Antonio Marceglia in 2019.