skip to main content

IMDEX 2023: Singapore to begin mid-life upgrades on first Formidable frigate in 2024

The third ship in the Formidable class, RSS Steadfast , (pictured here) while it was in the Singapore Strait. The class will undergo an MLU in 2024. (Janes/Ridzwan Rahmat)

The Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) will begin mid-life upgrade (MLU) works on the country's first Formidable-class frigate in 2024.

The matter was confirmed by the service's Commander First Flotilla Colonel Ng Kok Yeng Daniel during an interview with Janes ahead of the IMDEX 2023 naval exhibition held in Singapore from 3 to 5 May.

The RSN operates a fleet of six Formidable-class frigates that derive their design from the French Navy's La Fayette class, and the warships were commissioned between 2007 and 2009.

Singapore's Minister of Defence Ng Eng Hen disclosed during a March 2022 parliamentary session that the entire class would undergo an MLU programme, which would upgrade the warship's weapon systems and maintenance processes.

In his interview with Janes , Col Ng further described the MLU as one that would focus on three key areas: its combat capabilities, command-and-control (C2) systems, and engineering readiness.

A key feature of the first focus will be a replacement of the frigates' Harpoon surface-to-surface (SSM) missile with the Blue Spear SSM. This upgrade would improve the Formidable class's overall strike capabilities given the Blue Spear's longer range of 290 km and improved targeting capabilities.

Besides the SSM upgrade, the frigates will also be fitted with torpedo countermeasure systems. The RSN declined to provide further details on this.

Looking to read the full article?

Gain unlimited access to Janes news and more...