Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace (KONGSBERG) and Navantia SA SME have signed an Memorandum of Understanding with the objective of exploring potential mutual collaboration in support of and future modernization of the Royal Norwegian Navy F-310 Nansen class frigates. The Nansen Class Frigates, delivered between 2006 and 2011, were designed and built by Navantia for the Norwegian Navy. Navantia has been supporting the Norwegian Navy since 2013 in the sustainment and maintenance of the frigates.
The frigates were originally intended as a replacement for the aging Oslo-class frigates, with a primary focus on anti-submarine warfare (ASW). Eventually, the need for a robust anti-aircraft defense as well as the possibility of incorporating the Naval Strike Missile surface-to-surface missile produced by Norwegian company Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace led to a more multi-role design. The selection of Navantia as prime contractor led to the design being very similar to the Spanish Navy’s Álvaro de Bazán-class frigates, including the incorporation of Lockheed Martin’s AEGIS combat system.
The Fridtjof Nansen-class frigates are larger, and have more personnel and equipment than the Oslo-class frigates. Compared to the Oslo-class vessels, the new vessels are 35 meters longer, nine meters taller and two meters deeper below water. They are also five meters broader and have three times the water displacement of the old ships. The frigates also operates six new NFH NH90 helicopters, with the role as an extended “arm” of the frigates’ ASW and ASuW capabilities.
KONGSBERG was one of the main subcontractors of such Nansen Class Frigate Program and supplied the national parts of the Combat System: anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare systems based on the company’s combat management system architecture as well as the navigations system. KONGSBERG has been supporting the frigates over many years since. Under the present agreement, the state owned company NAVANTIA and KONGSBERG (51% state owned company), will evaluate ways of joint collaboration in the future support of the frigates’ modernization and with the ultimate goal of providing the best solutions to the Norwegian Armed Forces.