- A CMS software upgrade is among several new fits for the UK Type 45 destroyers, with HMS Defender first to receive these modifications
- Defender is also the first Type 45 to go through the latest full upkeep maintenance and modification process
The UK Royal Navy (RN) Type 45 air-defence destroyer HMS Defender has received a datalink software upgrade for its CMS-1 combat management system (CMS). The upgrade, introduced as part of a recent full upkeep period, is one of several modifications embodied in a Type 45 for the first time.
The new CMS-1 software (version 188.8.131.52) brings an improved version of the Cayman software application that interfaces with Defender’s Link 11 and Link 16 tactical data exchange networks and the ship’s satellite tactical data link (STDL) system. Cayman correlates information, including contacts, from these various systems. The new software provides a patch that improves Cayman functionality. Alongside the software update, new processing hardware – next-generation ‘Tech 15’ hardware, which brings a processing power upgrade – has also been installed.
The new CMS software was trialled at sea on another Type 45 before Defender received the first fit of the proven version. During Defender’s own post-upkeep work-up at sea, the software underwent a combat system demonstration trial (a combined testing of weapons, sensors, software, and processes/procedures) during a Flag Officer Sea Training (FOST) air-defence exercise. With aircraft and surface vessels gathered at FOST, Defender was able to use “real-world objects to test the command system, to make sure it functions correctly”, Lieutenant Commander Ben Shirley, Defender’s weapon engineer officer (WEO), told Jane’s.
The ship’s communications bandwidth capacity was also increased, with the installation of the latest SCOT5 Full Maritime Terminal (FMT) to support the ship’s satellite communications (satcom) capability. Lt Cdr Shirley said the bandwidth uplift was “an obsolescence management upgrade”.
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