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Final Hellenic Navy Roussen-class FAC enters service

The Hellenic Navy commissioned its seventh and final Roussen-class (Super Vita) FAC-M, HS Ypoploiarchos Vlahakos , on 29 September. (Dimitrios Mitsopoulos)

The Hellenic Navy's (HN's) seventh Roussen (Super Vita)-class fast attack craft-missile (FAC-M), HS Ypoploiarchos Vlahakos (P 79), was commissioned into service during a ceremony held at Amfiali Naval Base on 29 September.

Ypoploiarchos Vlahakos is the final ship in the much-delayed Roussen-class construction programme, which dates back to 2000 when the first batch of three was ordered from Elefsis Shipyards. Options for the second batch of two were exercised in 2003, followed by a contract for the sixth and seventh boats in 2008.

UK shipbuilder Vosper Thornycroft (now part of BAE Systems) provided the design – a stretched version of its Super Vita corvettes in service with Qatar – as well as logistical support and equipment for the programme.

The Roussen class has a full load displacement of 660 tonne, an overall length of 62 m, a 9.5 m beam, and 2.6 m draft. The ships can carry a crew complement of 45, and are powered by four MTU 16V595 diesel engines driving four fixed‐pitch propellers for speeds of up to 34 kt, with a range of 1,800 n miles at 12 kt.

The ships are each armed with eight MBDA Exocet MM40 missiles (the first three being equipped with the Block 2 variant and ships four to seven with Block 3 one), RAM air-defence missiles, a 76 mm/62 Super Rapid gun, and two 30 mm guns. The systems and sensor suite include Thales' Tacticos combat management system, an MW08 3D G-band surveillance radar, a Mirador electro-optical sensor, and a Scout Mk ll radar.

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