Friday, March 24, 2017

Some LMS Details From LIMA 2017

Jane's article "LIMA 2017: CSIC discloses further details of Littoral Mission Ship proposal for Malaysia" has provided some details of the LMS design by China Shipbuilding & Offshore International Corp (COSCO).

The design incorporates containerised system modules that provides the ship the flexiblity to be configured for a variety of missions including SAR and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. The weaponary is basic where it will be primarily armed with a small calibre remote weapon system quite similar in capability with the Samudera class training ships. 

I guess gunboats are again the trend for the navy based on their limited financial capabilities though the specifications provide it more patrol range and capabilities to provide the LMS more sea legs than the patrol crafts of old.

A model of the LMS shown in LIMA 2017. Source : IHS Markit / Ridzwan Rahmat

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Second Batch Of LCS coming into the Horizon?

The RMN's 15-to-5  Armada Transformation Program plan seems to have gained some tailwind with the receipt by BNS of the LOA for the supply of four China designed Littoral Mission Ships (LMS) that is due to be delivered from 2019 with two locally built units to be delivered in 2021.

As for the LMS's big brother the LCS, a new program, presumably for a second batch of the Gowind based LCS should be formally announced in August or September this year. This was mentioned by the CNO Admiral Tan Sri Ahmad Kamarulzaman in an interview by Reuters and reported in the NST that they are in the final stages of negotiations with the French shipbuilder DCNS.

The Navy is still hoping to acquire three multi role support ships (MRSS) which purchase plan is reportedly approved by the Defence Minister and two additional submarines to complete their fleet plans. This is despite the country cutting its total defence budget as the Navy aims to use the cost savings from the 15-to-5 plan to purchase the assets as off budget procurement as reportedly being done with the LMS programme.

As LIMA 2017 kicks off today, hopefully more procurement programs for the Armed Forces will be announced during the event.