Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Royal Malaysian Navy Gowind class Corvettes for LCS program to be fitted with stealth 57mm Guns

At the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace exhibition 2013, Navy Recognition exclusively learned that the 6 future Gowind class Corvettes (Littoral Combat Ship program) will be fitted with 57mm Mark 3 main guns with stealth cupola from BAE Systems Bofors. We also took the opportunity to get the latest updates on the Malaysian LCS program from Anuar Murad, Director of Defence and Security at Boustead Heavy Industry Corporation.

It was confirmed during LIMA that the combat management system will be the SETIS by DCNS, the Fire Control Systems will be provided by Rheinmetall, and the engines will be provided by MTU. The design seems to have increased in size with the length of the LCS now at 111 meters (compared to 107 as previously reported) with a displacement of about 3,000 tons (compared to full load displacement of 2,730 tonnes as previously announced).

Integrated with SETIS, a combat system derived from FREMM class Frigates, Gowind Combat can tackle air, surface and submarine threats. The shock-resistant platform (built according to military standards), the small radar cross-section together with an excellent acoustic signature makes it a high-performance surface combatant.

Gowind Combat can be operated by a limited crew and has been designed to offer great at-sea availability and reduced life cycle costs.

BHIC Bofors Asia Sdn Bhd, the joint venture between Boustead Heavy Industries and BAE Systems (Bofors Asia), created in 2004, is set to benefit following the award to BAE Systems of a sub-contract for the sale of six 57mm Mk 3 naval guns for the Royal Malaysian Navy in a deal worth approximately RM175m.

The contract ‘letter of award’ was granted to BAE Systems during LIMA 2013 by the systems integrator, Contraves Advanced Devices, which is a joint venture between Boustead Heavy Industries and Rheinmetall Air Defence AG.

The 57mm naval gun, designed by BAE Systems in
Karlskoga, Sweden, will equip the Malaysian Navy’s Second Generation Patrol Vessel – Littoral Combat Ships (SGPV-LCS). The contract includes ammunition hoists, simulator and initial support.

The 57mm Mk 3 naval gun with stealth cupola is already fitted on the Royal Swedish Navy Visby class stealth corvettes. Like on the
Visby class, the stealth cupola will greatly contribute to lower the stealth signature of the Malaysian Gowind corvettes. An engineer from BHIC Bofors Asia SDN. BHD. told us during LIMA 2013 that the shape of the stealth cupola for the Gowind Corvettes will slightly differ from the one found on the Visby class to maximize the stealth characteristics of the corvette designed by DCNS.

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