Three interesting stories this week that are type 26 Frigate related, kind of;
Raytheon has successfully fired their 5″/127mm Excalibur N5 precision guided projectile from a Mk 45 test mount.
From the press release;
Excalibur N5’s range, precision and lethality will revolutionize naval gunfire and increase the offensive firepower of our Navy’s destroyers and cruisers. This demonstration showcases the N5’s maturity as a proven low-risk solution, and is ready for the Navy now. Excalibur N5 can be used to support several critical mission areas including Naval Surface Fire Support, Anti-Surface Warfare (ASuW) and countering Fast Attack Craft (FAC). With the significant amount of re-use from the Army’s Excalibur program, the N5 provides the Navy with an affordable, direct path to employ a critical capability, We continue to build on Excalibur’s unmatched reliability and performance by investing in a fire-and-forget, dual-mode seeker that will vastly improve the 5-inch gun’s current ASuW and counter-FAC capability.
Using technology from the 155mm Excalibur, the company funded N5 will obviously be on the Royal Navy’s wishlist for the Type 26.
ExLS and CAMM
The three cell ExLS Stand Alone Launcher has been around for a while now and the intent for CAMM qualification floating around likewise, this is the first confirmation of when it will happen. ExLS is designed for smaller vessels, those that cannot integrate the larger 8 cells Mk 41 Vertical Launch System (VLS).
It is available in two configurations, standalone and host, with the latter capable of being dropped into an existing Mk 41 cell as a single sealed unit. The drop in version can quad pack the CAMM. This means that a ship with a larger Mk41 installation could mix ExLS cells and CAMM missiles as required, expanding the addressable market for CAMM and providing additional flexibility.
It is a clever and neat approach.
The host version of ExLS and CAMM was test fired in 2013 to prove ejection and missile ignition.
Although we have all seen the graphics and counted silos on the Type 26 graphics and models, this does provide the designers with more options.
HGH Spynel-S 3500
The final story, whilst not directly related to the Type 26, is likely to be relevant as final systems configurations are decided and this is made available for smaller vessels.
HGH Infrared Systems manufacture panoramic thermal imaging systems, working in a QinetiQ led project they will supply their Spynel-M products for integration with the Compact Combat System (C2S) that will combine a Kelvin Hughes SharpEye radar and a Chess Dynamics Sea Eagle.
The prototype test unit is shown below;
The system is primarily designed to counter the small fast inshore attack craft (FIACs) threat. Information from the three sensors and AIS data is integrated with the Enhanced Situation Awareness From Existing Sensors (ESAFES) fusion engine and presented to a single display and cueing information provided to on deck automatic weapons via an Ethernet link.
The contract announced today will see further trials and testing completed.