Iranian navy shows off UAV capabilities

by Jeremy Binnie

The Hengam-class landing ship Lavan with numerous UAVs on launch rails during the 15 January event. (Mehr News Agency)

The Islamic Republic of Iran Navy (IRIN) displayed support ships equipped with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in a 15 July event attended by its Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani, and armed forces Commander Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi.

“Using drones adds a significant capacity to our naval units and expands our dominance for hundreds of kilometres,” Rear Adm Irani said in a television interview.

The Iranian media released photographs and video footage, showing various UAV types being launched from the Hengam-class landing ship Lavan (514), the support ship Delvar (471), and a Kilo-class submarine that was identified as Tariq .

Most were launched from rails using rocket boosters, including what appeared to be Ababil-2 and Arash types, which can be used to conduct one-way attacks. Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) television news coverage of the event showed a floating target and a target on land being hit by UAVs.


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Update: UK's first future subsea surveillance ship arrives in Merseyside for conversion

by Kate Tringham & Richard Scott

The UK's newly acquired future Multi-Role Ocean Surveillance ship sails into Cammell Laird shipyard, Birkenhead, Liverpool, on 19 January. (Royal Navy)

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has purchased a second-hand commercial offshore patrol vessel from P&O Maritime Logistics' subsidiary Topaz Energy and Marinefor conversion into a specialist ship dedicated to protecting the country's critical subsea infrastructure.

The vessel, which is currently named MV Topaz Tangaroa, arrived at Cammell Laird shipyard in Birkenhead, Merseyside, for refitting on 19 January.

Topaz Tangaroa will be converted into the first of two plannedMulti-Role Ocean Surveillance (MROS) ships for underwater surveillance and seabed warfare, to be operated by the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA). According to the MoD, the vessel will be formally handed over to control of the RFA in the coming days. Following the completion of its conversion activities, the vessel is planned to join the fleet around mid-2023.

Topaz Tangaroa, which will be renamed for the RFA service, was built by


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Irish Naval Service opts to mothball Roisin-class OPVs due to manning issues

by Kate Tringham

The Irish Naval Service has decided to place its two 1,700 tonne Róisín (PV 80)-class OPVs into operational reserve as a result of ongoing staffing shortages. (Irish Navy)

The Irish Naval Service (INS) has been forced to mothball its two Róisín (PV 80)-class offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) as a result of ongoing recruitment and retention issues.

An Irish Defence Forces (IDF) spokesperson confirmed to Janes that LÉ Róisín (P 51) was placed into operational reserve with effect from 31 January and that LÉ Niamh (P 52) would be placed into operational reserve on the completion of its mid-life upgrade (MLU) later this year.

“The decision to place LÉ Róisín and LÉ Niamh into operational reserve is aimed at stabilising operational delivery and assisting in the Naval Service regeneration, which entails the prioritisation of personnel training and development of existing INS personnel,” the spokesperson said. “LÉ Róisín and LÉ Niamh will remain in operational reserve until such time as the Naval Service has sufficiently regenerated suitably qualified and experienced personnel.”


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US Navy cannibalises more ships to make up for part shortfalls

by Michael Fabey

Aircraft carrier combat-system part shortfalls are forcing the US Navy to cannibalise parts from other Nimitz-class ships (Michael Fabey)

The US Navy (USN) is cannibalising ships more often than in previous years to make up for part shortfalls and meet operational commitments, according to a recent report by the US Government Accountability Office (GAO).

“With the exception of fiscal year (FY) 2017, the average number of cannibalisations per ship increased every year from 2015 to 2021,” the GAO said in its report Weapon System Sustainment: Navy Ship Usage Has Decreased as Challenges and Costs Have Increased, released 31 January.

“We asked navy officials what drove these increases, and they told us ship cannibalisations often occur due to supply chain shortfalls for specific parts,” the GAO reported.


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The Islamic Republic of Iran Navy (IRIN) displayed support ships equipped with unmanned aerial vehic...

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