Saab and the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration have signed two agreements concerning the next generation of surface ships and corvettes.

A Product Definition Phase for the Mid-Life Upgrades (MLU) of five Visby-class corvettes, as well as a Product Definition Phase for the next generation; Visby Generation 2 corvettes.

The contracts include requirements’ analysis and are respectively the start of the modification work of the five corvettes and the acquisition of the Visby Generation 2 vessels.

“The contract is a major step forward for Sweden’s surface combat capability, with the upgrade of current corvettes and the creation of the next generation vessels. The Visby corvettes have been pioneers for 20 years, and after Mid-Life Upgrades they will be well equipped for future assignments. The experience and knowledge that the Visby class has gathered over the years will feed into the development of Visby Generation 2,” said Lars Tossman, Head of Business Area Kockums.

The Visby Generation 2 is a development of Visby-class version 5 and will be equipped with a modern anti-ship missile system, torpedo system and air defence missile system.

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Johan
Johan
7 months ago

LOOKS like something you see in a field @ Glastonbury PMSL noddy comes to toy town. imagine designing that and going home thinking i had a great day….

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
7 months ago
Reply to  Johan

It looks simple to build and will have a low radar CS.

The Swedes are anything but idiots. It will be well designed and thought through for costal defense: blue water it won’t be with that high a CoG.

Last edited 7 months ago by Supportive Bloke
Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
7 months ago

Can’t help thinking coastal defence vessels with that sort of weaponry of this nature might be valuable for us taking weight off of the blue water fleet escorts.

dave12
dave12
7 months ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Dont be silly we apparently cant even afford an army any more.

Andrew
7 months ago
Reply to  dave12

It’s not good is it dave even with Extra money.

dave12
dave12
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

Seems certain now numbers in the army will be cut .

Andrew
7 months ago
Reply to  dave12

Can’t get my head round it.

dave12
dave12
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

Its going come back and bite us in the ass at some point I’m sure, its a criminal decision.

Andrew
7 months ago
Reply to  dave12

Politicians never learn they just make mistake after mistake sadly.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

It’s to pay for the £190 billion equipment program. We want world beating equipment and capabilities. The MOD has to balance the books, so for once we might not have to see projects getting cut back as the money runs out. It has to be sustainable, otherwise we just put a sticking plaster on the problems every 5 years.

Andrew
7 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

This may be so Rob ,I know there’s already a black hole in Defence and yes beating equipment is great but to fight you need numbers we are far far too small .Like Dave said it may come back and bite us.

dave12
dave12
7 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

The point is Rob is that we struggled in Helmand when we had over 100,00 size army and had to get help from the US marines ,how are we going to operate any where with 68,000 troops especially in a pier on pier small conflict, the numbers do not add up.

dave12
dave12
7 months ago
Reply to  dave12

Just to add we can only field 10,000 troops in Afghanistan.

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  dave12

I’d suggest if we where in a peer on peer conflict the country would not remain on a peace-time footing like it did in Afghan, nor, one would hope, would the war continue for over a decade. You’d also hope that the troops you did have ready to go where equipped to a standard that would be usefull in a peer-on-peer conflict.
Side question: How many other countries managed to deploy 10,000 troops to Afghanistan?

Last edited 7 months ago by Dern
Caspian237
Caspian237
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

I think we were the second largest contributor in Afghanistan after the USA and had three times as many troops in the country as the next largest contributor, Germany. France and Germany never had more than 3-4 thousand troops there at any one time. If cuts to the army are true we would simply need to role back our commitments to such operations to match those of other countries. I fail to see what advantage the UK has gained for disproportionately committing itself in this way other than gaining the good grace of the USA which really only has a… Read more »

Meirion X
Meirion X
7 months ago
Reply to  Caspian237

The advantage we have grained is a much lower threat of terrorism!
Afghanistan was once a training camp for terrorists.

Caspian237
Caspian237
7 months ago
Reply to  Meirion X

Yes, of course, but that is a shared benefit for everyone. Are we three times safer from terrorism compared to France and Germany because we deployed three times as many troops? Are we going to pretend that all this isn’t really just about placating the American to keep them engaged with the defence of Europe?

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Caspian237

Yup we where, by a considerable margin. Cost benefit aside the point being that yes while we struggled to maintain 10,000 troops in Afghan, very few other nations even came close to the same ballgame.

Keeping what was, in effect, a small division, deployed overseas constantly for ¬10years is no small feat in todays world.

Caspian237
Caspian237
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Yes, an achievement we should recognise and be proud off. Moving forward though I really do think we should be more mercenary in these things. If we’re going to continue to make considerably larger contributions to international operations compared to our peers then we’re going to have to accept that we will have considerably less money to spend on new equipment.

Daveyb
Daveyb
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

The perennial problem is the lack of depth and reserves. If we go down to 68,000 how many of them will actually be front line units, possibly half, with remainder made up with loggies, police, siggies, engineers etc. Therefore there will be no scope to surge additional forces over and above our NATO commitment. This is doubly troubling as if we did fight a peer vs peer conflict and sustained significant losses who replaces them? Don’t count on the reserves as they are also significantly under strength.

Paul T
Paul T
7 months ago
Reply to  dave12

Good point Dave.
How many fighting infantry soldiers will make up the 68,000? I hope it’s more than 10.
Politicians have proved they are not capable of understanding the importance of defence and as such decision making should be put in the hands of a separate body with accountability and proper funding.

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Why? The Royal Navy doesn’t need heavily armed coastal patrol vessels, that’s why our OPV’s sacrifice armament in favour of long sea legs and low running costs.
Pretty much the last thing on our priority list would be small, short range, heavily armed ships that can do little except protect the immediate vicinity of the UK.
They work really well for Sweden whose maritime interests are limited to the Baltic, they really would only siphon money away from other much needed projects in the RN.

Andy P
Andy P
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

What Dern says.

I can only assume that people want or like these because they’re heavily armed rather than any real role that the RN would use them for. Sea keeping properties are much more important in UK home waters, at least for the ‘smaller’ (yeah I know the Rivers are 2000 tons) vessels.

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

Yup see below for more of these, sigh…
But yeah it is “oh this ship has missiles! the 40mm on a River doesn’t give my ego the boost it needs,” rather than an appreciation of the actual requirements and limitations of the RN and wider MoD.

Last edited 7 months ago by Dern
Paul C
Paul C
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Many do not understand what the operational requirements of the RN actually are, see something they like the look of and say ‘Why don’t we just get some of those?’ Small, heavily armed patrol/attack craft seem to be a ‘thing’ with these people, including the bunch who think we should go back to motor torpedo boats as they did OK in WW2. Putin and Xi are terrified of them, apparently.

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Paul C

I mean I get the allure, and yeah I get people not thinking through the operational requirements. It’s just sad because the Rivers as they are, make sense for what the RN needs.

Pete
Pete
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Thought Rivers had 20mm on B1 and 30mm on B2 which are fine for home waters activity. 40mm would be more appropriate IMHO for those on long-term international assignments… At close to 5000km range, with the armament they have, a max speed of 35kt allowing rapid response the Visby concept would be an ideal solution for the gulf and Singapore type basing envisaged freeing up ‘F’ vessels for heavier work. Even allowing for inflation they come in at @ no more than the same price tag as that paid for B2’s. We are where we are but its the value… Read more »

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Pete

Correct, that is my mistake and a typo. But Why? With the 40mm what can you realistically engage that a 30mm can not, except for the fact that it’s a bigger number so it sounds better. (Been over this many times). If you want to make a River a combatant you need much more than 10mm extra on the gun, and if you want it to be a constabulary vessel you don’t need the extra 10mm. The Visby is precisely NOT what you need in Singapore. What’s needed in Singapore is a high endurance ship that can deal with open… Read more »

Last edited 7 months ago by Dern
Glass Half Full
Glass Half Full
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Good comments Dern and Robert.

Pete
Pete
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

40mm = double the range and option of smart munitions relative to 30mm. Not something to go out and wage war with but something to offer more robust defence when faced real threats that exist in such locations Look at what other navies operating in the SEAsia region specifies as their base level for contemporary OPV’s ( Australia 40mm, Singapore 76mm etc). My main issue as mentioned before Dem is not the capability per se, its the ukp paid for the capability provided. Where RN does lead the world it appears, along with quality of crew and training etc which… Read more »

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Pete

Okay so…. pretty much no answer to everything I posted. You didn’t even manage to answer my opening question so let me repeat that and see if you can answer just that one single point: What are you needing a 40mm for that you can’t use a 30mm to deal with, but won’t require you to add CIWS, Sea Ceptor, and Artisan as well? Again saying “double the range” is all well and good, but if the 30mm is already providing you with an overmatch of targets you’re going for then why do you need more “Peeet”? *Edit* Oh and… Read more »

Last edited 7 months ago by Dern
pete
pete
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Dern. The issue is what is the mission and what are the threats. Fishery protection and escorting Russian warships through the channel……and yes, the 30mm is fine. Locate a ‘P’ vessel to operate somewhere out of Singapore and you really need to consider what it is you expect that patrol vessel to be doing. I have lived and worked South / SE Asia etc for the past 20+ years. I have contributed to Emergency Response risk assessment and mitigation planning for offshore oil and gas industry Ops in a variety of jurisdictions. I can assure you from first hand experience… Read more »

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  pete

So again, I’m saying you’re either in a situation where a 30mm will do fine, or you need something significantly larger than a 40mm. Probably a Frigate with CIWS, AshM missiles, etc. If only we had something like that… Or you know what, maybe a patrol boat with a Wildcat flying off it with a load of Martlets would have done the trick if you really needed to sink something. If only the River Batch 2’s had that capability. Oh wait they do. But fine. You want to mitigate risk, lets play your game. You want a 40mm on an… Read more »

Last edited 7 months ago by Dern
Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

In all fairness the conversation hasn’t been helped by various RN sources talking about up arming the Rivers.

Personally I think up arming the Rivers much apart from maybe some defensive Ceptor, or the like, would be a mistake as politicians then think they are suitable for the heavy stuff.

You simply cannot compare a radar aimed modern naval canon with a manually aimed anti aircraft cannon bolted to the front of a corvette however big.

Suitable for forward basing in Singapore is sounding a lot more like work for a T31 than a River.

Dern
Dern
7 months ago

Honestly even Ceptor is an issue because you’d still need crew and radars fitted to operate it which would cost £££’s. The thing that gets me is nobody ever seems to talk about the one thing that would really give the Rivers a leg up on almost any mission set they’d be doing, and that is a telescoping hangar. Putting that on a River would provide a lot more capabiliy than a 40mm, for significantly less cost (both upfront and through life). Rivers can already take a Merlin on their flight deck, but without a hangar it’s limited in how… Read more »

Last edited 7 months ago by Dern
Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

I agree a drone with a decent camera – half decent radar and a couple of Marlet would be a massive booster – probably the cheapest upgrade you can do.

I suspect a containerised hangar might be used?

Do the 20/30mm have an AAW mode? More thinking anti drone!

Julian
Julian
7 months ago

I agree that containerised drones on B2 would be a match made in heaven and as Daveyb has already mentioned there is space specifically designed for a single ISO container aft of the RIBs on both the port and starboard sides which are then perfectly positioned for the end doors to open onto the flight deck. Heck, you could even cut a regular crew door into the opposite end of the container and then maintenance crew can easily transit to/from the “hangars” via the ship’s access doors to the RIB areas without needing to go via the flight deck. To… Read more »

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Julian

The argument for up-arming a off board system like a VTOL drone or a Helicopter though is much better than for uparming a River:

If you want to operate a drone off of a Frigate, Destroyer, or Carrier is you fly it onto the new ship, transfer the staff, and move the container over. So a UK S-100 with Martlet on it provides every ship in the Royal Navy with a stand off VTOL UAV with a light anti-shipping missile, as opposed to just the Rivers who, yes, might not need it.

Dern
Dern
7 months ago

Containerised hangar for UAV’s would be great, again the big thing in my thinking here is I don’t believe there is a suitable drone in inventory, and procuring a drone large enough to replicate the surveilance and possibly firepower of a Wildcat is £££’s which we don’t have.
So for now; if we really need to upgrade River B2’s: See how we can embark a wildcat when needed, then get a VTOL drone of some sort when one is aquired for the wider navy.

Daveyb
Daveyb
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

As much as I’d prefer the Batch 2s (B2) with a hangar. I can’t see it happening purely on price grounds. Plus have we enough Wildcats to spare? Why did we get rid of all the Lynxes? In this day and age, would a VTOL UAV be more appropriate for the duties that a B2 undertakes? Ok, it wont be able to ferry people about or put a sniper in the air. But for local surveillance and monitoring it is far better than what the ship currently has. There’s space alongside the crane for a standard size ISO, which could… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
7 months ago
Reply to  Daveyb

Agree

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Daveyb

In terms of price grounds a collapsable hangar like the Bay Class have is certainly more affortable than a 40mm and all the assorted electronics and ammunition that would be required to get the most out of it.
The beauty of a helicopter is of course that it isn’t married to the ship and can be sent elsewhere when not needed for that mission set.

A VTOL UAV would be great, especially if it was martlet qualified (as Wildcat is) but we’d have to procure a large VTOL UAV first…

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Great post Dern.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

it’s 30mm. ( 20mm batch 1’s ).

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

I know, if you’d read beyond that you’d have seen I acknowledged that’s a typo.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

I saw your “Typo” then I read the rest, then i read your “Typo” correction.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Oh and just to add that I agree with your posts.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
7 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Well said mate. ?

Trevor G
Trevor G
7 months ago

Also, hope they have a good de-icing system.

Paul T
Paul T
7 months ago

It makes a Good Comparison with Finland who are going the more Traditional Route with the Pohjanmaa Class Corvettes – the Swedes always seem to do things Differently.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
7 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

Look at the step change T23 -> T45 design.

The info graphic is pretty much where you would go with the same concepts, on a smaller hull, if fully rounded surfaces were not an issue.

Historically, rounded surfaces on superstructure = cost = no can do.

Last edited 7 months ago by Supportive Bloke
Chris
Chris
7 months ago

I wish we could revert to corvettes like this instead of our toothless Rivers that have the equivalent of a pop gun. These would give excellent coastal protection and foreign escort duties and free up the Frigates and Destroyers for the blue sea.

My home port (Tees) had a once great reputation for building corvettes… it would be great to see that return too.

Andrew
7 months ago
Reply to  Chris

The Rivers can only observe really.Like the word pop gun Chris.TEES is also my home port .

Mark
Mark
7 months ago
Reply to  Chris

What Coastal Protection needs does the UK need? Expecting the French to get aggressive or something?

Andrew
7 months ago
Reply to  Mark

Think it’s called Russin navy.

Mark
Mark
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

So use a limited budget to fund hulls just around the coast instead of Blue Water assets? How does that make sense?

Andrew
7 months ago
Reply to  Mark

Mark Russin ships are Armed to the teeth

Mark
Mark
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

Yes they are, your point? Unless you are suggesting the RN plan for a Russian warship going from “peace” to “war” while in the English channel with no warning or intelligence to suggest it then buying these ships for the UK makes no sense.

Dern
Dern
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

If the Russian navy goes to war with Sweden it needs to fight it in the calm waters of the Baltics and close in shore to Sweden. If the Russian Navy is at war with NATO it’ll be primarily concerned with passing through the GIUK Gap. Visby’s are not preventing anything from going through that.

Glass Half Full
Glass Half Full
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

Think about that scenario though. Is the Russian navy going to send a surface vessel anywhere close to the UK in a hot war? What do you think the survive-ability of the vessel, or a fleet of such vessels, would be when subject to NATO submarine, surface vessel and aircraft attack from the Barents and Norwegian Sea on down?

Sean
Sean
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

If the Russian Navy were to cause issues in U.K. coastal waters then they soon discover they’re in range of something called the RAF…
No need to endanger a ships crew to deal with such an irritation.

Andrew
7 months ago
Reply to  Sean

Rule one never underestimate your Enemy

Paul T
Paul T
7 months ago
Reply to  Sean

And the RAF’s Principle Anti- Ship Weapon is……. …………?.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

The Russian navy is not the Red Banner Fleet of old. It is now aimed at doing a bastion protection role keeping its Boomers safe in the Kara and White Sea.
If they managed to sortie enough ships in a conflict around the North Cape they would not last long on the open ocean.
Red Storm Rising is long gone.

Daveyb
Daveyb
7 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Seen any suspicious car carriers off Iceland recently. If so, you know something’s going to kick off!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
7 months ago
Reply to  Daveyb

Great book. Ironically even in that story that is how the Soviets started, by tucking the Bombers away east of the Kola.

Meirion X
Meirion X
7 months ago
Reply to  Chris

Not suitable for Blue Water operations, because of endurance and range, these would be of limited unity to the RN

Last edited 7 months ago by Meirion X
Herodotus
Herodotus
7 months ago

Having looked at the caption photo, I was left wondering whether the Swedish Navy now require cone-head recruits?

Geoffrey Roach
Geoffrey Roach
7 months ago

Interesting that this article about Swedish Corvettes has turned into one about the size of the size of the British army.. I know I am advertising here but my paper in the Analysis section. “The British Army…towards 2030” might be worth a read for anyone who hasn’t.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
7 months ago

Saab appears to be a very useful partner.

Engaged with Tempest, in a very good position to field Sea Gripen 4.5gen, their latest RBS15 anti-ship missile and clearly, a very useful Corvette!

We could do far worse?