HTMS Krabi Offshore Patrol Vessel
The navy is procuring a new class of offshore patrol vessel (OPV) from BVT Surface Fleet (since rebranded BAE Systems Surface Ships). In June 2009 Bangkok Dock signed a contract to build a 90 meter offshore patrol vessel (OPV) for the Royal Thai Navy based on a design provided by UK-based shipbuilder BVT Surface Fleet. Although the contract between the two companies was for one ship, all parties involved had a view that this will increase - budget permitting; a second ship would be ordered when funding allows.
The budget for the Krabi [the Thai word for a curved sword] was said to be around 3,000 Baht, about US$85 million (2009 currency). The ship was built in RTN’s Mahidol Dockyard, one of the largest dry docks in South East Asia. Official sources reported that the duration of operation was expected to last 4 years or from 2009 to 2012, with a budget of 1,695 million baht.
By August 2010 construction of the first BAE Systems designed Offshore Patrol Vessel for the Royal Thai Navy was well underway in Thailand, as demonstrated at the formal keel laying ceremony at Bangkok Dock, the Company’s local partner. The occasion, attended by Thailand's Royal representative, HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn and senior officials from the Royal Thai Navy, came just 14 months after the initial contract was signed.
Under the agreement, BAE Systems supplied the design of its proven 90 meter Offshore Patrol Vessel, which Bangkok Dock adapted to meet the specific requirements of the Royal Thai Navy, for example incorporating a similar combat system to that being fitted to other ships in its fleet. Engineers from BAE Systems worked alongside Bangkok Dock, throughout the construction of the vessel to transfer design knowledge, technology and skills that would contribute to the growth of a sustainable shipbuilding capability in Thailand.
Commenting on the program, Alan Johnston, Managing Director of BAE Systems’ Surface Ships division, said: “At a time when we are seeking to boost exports, this approach to industry partnerships shows the strength that BAE Systems can bring to navies around the world as they look for cost-effective solutions to enhance the capability of their fleets to meet future requirements.”
Captain Chumpol Promprasit, managing director of Bangkok Dock, said: “To promote a domestic shipbuilding industry, the Royal Thai Navy assigned Bangkok Dock to undertake the provision of design and supply of ship build material using both domestic and international experts during construction of the Offshore Patrol Vessel. “This is considered as promoting and improving the technical competency and potential of the Royal Thai Navy personnel in building ships for domestic purposes, based on the King’s self sustainability programme.”
To promote a domestic shipbuilding industry, the Royal Thai Navy assigned Bangkok Dock to undertake the provision of design and supply of ship build material using both domestic and international experts during construction of the Offshore Patrol Vessel. This is considered as promoting and improving the technical competency and potential of the Royal Thai Navy personnel in building ships for domestic purposes, based on the King’s self sustainability program.
HTMS Krabi, the BAE Systems designed Offshore Patrol Vessel built by the Royal Thai Navy was launched at a ceremony at the Mahidol Adulyadej Naval Dockyard. The launch of HTMS Krabi on Friday 02 December 2011 was conducted by HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn and came just 15 months after the vessel’s keel laying ceremony in August 2010.
Shipbuilding not only promotes and develops the technical potential and Royal Thai Navy personnel, but is also considered self-sustainability under H.M. the King’s idea. Therefore to promote domestic shipbuilding industry could at the same time be seen as a way to generate job creation in the country. Marine forces and missions assigned are expected to be strengthened, once the completion of shipbuilding and the operation begins.
Servowatch Systems Limited, the leading UK based marine automation systems engineering company, proudly announces success in securing the contract to deliver a "state of the art" Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS) for a planned series of Offshore Patrol Vessels to be delivered to the Royal Thai Navy by The Bangkok Dock Co. (1957) Ltd.
The contract was secured against strong international competition and strengthens the presence of Servowatch in the region. The IPMS shall include ship alarm, monitoring, power management, propulsion control, battle damage control functions and navigation systems integration. The design is based upon the proven package delivered on the original design of this vessel from BAE Systems, and secures the Servowatch position as a leading system supplier for this type of vessel.
HTMS KRABI exceeded expectations during sea trials involving test firings and helicopter operation. Her senior officers also visited the U.K. at the invitation of the Royal Navy Flag Officer Sea Training Organization where they spent time aboard HMS Severn, a River Class vessel, and the Brazilian Navy’s third Amazonas Class vessel to further understand the strengths of the design and to observe how the Royal Navy trains crews for duty aboard an Offshore Patrol Vessel.
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