Absalon Class

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Absalon Class multisupport ship
Absalon 01.jpg
Absalon Class multisupport ship
Career Flag of Kalmar Union.png
Nationality: Skandinavia
Operated by: Kongelige Sjøforsvaret
Builder: Odense Staalskibsværft
Ordered: First of class: April 2002
Launched: First of class: October 2003
Commissioned: First of class: November 2004
Status: In Service
General characteristics
Displacement: 6600 tonnes
Length: 137.0 m
Beam: 19.5 m
Draft: 6.3 m
Power: 30MW
Propulsion: NAtech/Volvo COFCAG (multi-gas turbine and fuel cell propulsion system) with two with two ABB AZIPODs azimut thrusters
Speed: 28 knots
Maximum speed: 35 knots
Range: 9,100 nautical miles at 28 knots
Complement: 100, plus aircrew and transients
Armament: Sensors
1 x Saab 9LV CMS Combat Management System
1 x Saab 9LV FCS Fire Control System
2 x Saab EOS 500 Electro Optical Fire Control
2 x TERMA SCANTER 4100 Surveillance Radar
1 x Kongsberg C-Scope Sonar System
Electronic warfare
1 x Saab SME-200 Tactical EMS / ELINT
1 x Saab NLWS Naval Laser Warning System
Decoys
1 x TERMA DL-12T decoy launcher
1 x TERMA Loki torpedo countermeasure
Armament
5 × StanFlex modules
4 x torpedo tubes for Torpedo 617
Depth charges
1 x 57 mm AB BOFORS Mk.3
3 x 30 mm Kongsberg Sea Protector CIWS
2 x Long Range Acoustic Device
Insertion craft
1 x CB90 Class fast assault craft
Aircraft carried: 2 x AS532 SC Cougar ASUW / ASW or 2 x Eurocopter AS 332F/F1 Super Puma Naval or ASW variants

Absalon Class muiltitask support ship were designed to be a hybrid between a frigate and military transport ship with multiple role capabilities, with the capacity to be transformed from a combat ship with the firepower of a traditional frigate to a C&C ship or a hospital ship within a day. Absalon Class ships should serve the Sjøforsvaret as ideal multitasking platforms for international operations or support missions.

The first two ships were named after two brothers, archbishop Absalon and Esbern Snare who led the naval campaigns in the 12th century against the Wends, a group of pagan Slavs in northern Germany. The later two were named after Absaon's nephews Anders Sunesen and Peder Sunesen.

In 2018 there are 3 ships in service and one more under construction to be used mainly in the SIGINT/ELINT role. The four ships were ordered to Odense Staalskibsværft.

Design[edit]

Absalon Class rear view

The ship design, with 16 watertight sections or compartments and two airtight bulkheads, incorporates survivability and damage limitation features including dual redundancy, automated damage control zones, damage detectors and smoke zones. The ship’s on-board battle damage and control system continuously monitors the status of the ship and incorporates a closed circuit television observation system with more than 50 cameras, fire fighting installations, sensors and alarms, a load and stability computer.

A roll-on roll-off ramp installed at the stern of the ship accesses the flex deck (flexible deck). The flex deck, providing 915m², and 250m of parking lanes, is about 90m long. The reinforced deck can embark vehicles up to 62t such as the Leopard II main battle tank.

The design is built with the aim of a large margin for growth over life-cycle, to a relatively low cost of ownership, with open architecture for ease of upgrades, with a high degree of automation allowing smaller crews, and utilizing StanFlex modules that can be shared across several ship classes in service with the Kongelige Sjøforsvaret. The standard weapons of the Absalon Class can be supplemented through the use of StanFlex mission modules. A special weapons deck (nicknamed the 'Bathtub') is designed with five StanFlex module slots. Because of the Bathtub's position, only missile-firing weapons modules can be installed.

The ship design incorporates stealth characteristics for low acoustic, radar, visual and infrared signatures. Shock protection and isolation are to STANAG 4142, 4137 and 4549. Parts of the hull are armour protected to STANAG 4569 standard. Manned areas are protected against nuclear biological and chemical warfare to STANAG 4447.

Power generation & propulsion[edit]

The power plant of the ship has been completely redesigned to suit the needs and requirements of the Sjøforsvaret and the new systems and elements of the ship. FLOSK chose to equip the ship with a mixed multi-gas turbine and fuel cell propulsion system (COFCAG) developed jointly by NAtech and Volvo Aero. Main fuel for which the system has been designed is hydrogen, but the system can also work with natural gas, methane and other gases, although with a lower energy efficiency. At low speed and during maneuvers the system uses the power delivered by the fuel cells, using the gas turbine system to achieve higher speeds. In addition, the system reuses the exhaust gases to turbocharge the turbine and for the ship's heating systems, which considerably reduces the ship's thermal footprint and finally the remaining gases are expelled from the stern. Power plant of the ship was designed taking into account the current needs of energy for propulsion and other systems on board, so it was possible to assume an increase in power required if new equipment or systems were installed in the future.

The propulsion system is fully electrical with two ASEA AZIPODs azimut thrusters mounted externally to the main hull. The electricity for the motors is supplied by the power system.

Electronic systems[edit]

One of the main design premises was the need to mount Skandinavia made electronic systems in order to full integration with other Forsvaret systems and satellite net.

Sensors

  • 1 x TERMA C-Flex Combat Management System
  • 1 x Saab 9LV FCS Fire Control System
  • 1 x Saab EOS 500 Electro Optical Fire Control
  • 1 x TERMA SCANTER 4100 Surveillance Radar
  • 1 x Kongsberg C-Scope Sonar System

Electronic warfare

  • 1 x TERMA TV-112 tactical radar surveillance system

Decoys

  • 1 x TERMA DL-22T Multi Ammunition Decoy System
  • 1 x TERMA Loki torpedo countermeasure

Armament[edit]

Air wing[edit]

Insertion craft[edit]

The ship is equipped for insertion of Special Operations Forces (SOF). The cargo deck carries one CB90 Class fast assault craft. The craft are launched from the port stern by a monorail and crane system and can be launched and recovered while the ship is underway.

List of ships[edit]

KSS Absalon and KSS Esbern Snare
# Name Ordered Launched Commissioned
L-10 KSS Abasalon April 2002 October 2003 November 2004
L-11 KSS Esbern Snare April 2002 October 2003 December 2004
L-12 KSS Anders Sunesen November 2005 January 2007 March 2008
L-13 KSS Peder Sunesen May 2016 June 2017 September 2018