PT PAL Indonesia, an Indonesian state-owned shipbuilder, has laid the keel for the first of two Red White frigates. The keel laying ceremony was held at PT PAL’s facility in Surabaya City, East Java, on August 25, 2023. The Red White frigate is based on Babcock’s Arrowhead 140 design and will be the largest and most advanced surface combatant ever constructed in Indonesia. The keel laying of the first Red White frigate is a significant milestone for the Indonesian Navy and marks a major step forward in its modernization efforts. The frigate will be a major addition to the Indonesian Navy’s fleet and will significantly boost its capabilities. The country is committed to modernizing its armed forces and the Red White frigate is a major step in that direction. The frigate will play an important role in protecting Indonesia’s interests in the region.
Designed by Babcock International, it is marketed under the name Arrowhead 140 and is based on Odense Maritime Technology’s (OMT) Iver Huitfeldt-class frigate hull. The design of Babcock’s Arrowhead 140 frigate originates from an air defence frigate, but is able to change operational role rapidly depending upon capability needs and will meet naval requirements both now and in the future. Arrowhead 140 is a multi-mission surface combatant capable of conducting AAW, ASuW, ASW and EW operations and is operationally proficient in both blue water and littoral areas. Capitalising upon a mature and proven design, Arrowhead 140 will deliver an assured frigate capability which is best placed to serve multi-operational demands.
On 16 September 2021, Babcock announced that it had signed an agreement with PT PAL Indonesia allowing it to design two Type 31 derivatives for the Indonesian Navy. The class are known locally as “Red White Frigate” (Fregat Merah Putih). The first steel cut of the first Red White frigate were done on 9 December 2022. The first frigate was laid down on 25 August 2023 at PAL Indonesia shipyard in Surabaya. Leveraging the experience and expertise developed through the Royal Navy’s Type 31 frigate program, Babcock is overseeing a transfer of the company’s critical engineering know-how and ship-build experience – supporting the construction of the frigate at PT PAL’s facilities in Surabaya, Indonesia.
The vessel has a length of 140 meters and a displacement of 5,996 tons. It will be powered by a combined diesel and diesel (CODAD) propulsion system and will have a maximum speed of 28 knots. The frigate will be equipped with two 76 mm naval gun systems, a 24-cell vertical launching system (VLS) for medium-range surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), a 32-cell VLS for long-range SAMs, and a 16-cell VLS for surface-to-surface missiles (SSMs). The combat management system (CMS) for the frigate will be supplied by Turkish company Havelsan. The frigate’s advanced weapons and sensors will allow it to perform a variety of missions, including anti-surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare, and air defense. The frigate will also be able to conduct maritime patrol and surveillance missions.