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MST wins contract to supply 12 m RHIBs for German Navy Type 126 frigates

An MST special forces FRISC. (MST)

Dutch-owned Damen Shipyardshas awarded UK boatbuilder Marine Specialised Technology Group (MST) a contract to equip the German Navy's Type 126 frigates with 12 m fast interceptor craft.

Under the contract, announced on 13 March, Merseyside-based MST will supply 12 of its latest-generation Fast Raiding, Interception and Special Forces Craft (FRISC) rigid-hulled inflatable boats (RHIBs). The scope of supply includes transportation trailers and a comprehensive integrated logistics support package.

The 12 m variant has a fully loaded displacement of 9.5 tonnes and can carry a team of 12 special forces operators, in addition to equipment. Propulsion is provided by two inboard diesel engines developing up to 600 hp each, to provide a top speed of 45 kt and a maximum range of 350 n mile.

According to MST, the craft will be equipped with the latest command, control, communications, computers, and, intelligence (C4I) systems and can be fitted with machine guns and other weapons to support lethality requirements. The vessel can be forward-deployed as an underslung load beneath a CH‐47 Chinook helicopter, or as an internal load onboard a C-130 Hercules transport aircraft.

FRISC is also operated by the Dutch and Belgian navies for border protection, marine counter-terrorism, and military and special forces operations.

Damen Shipyards was awarded a design and construction contract in June 2020 to deliver the four new Type 126 frigates for the German Navy, in co-operation with German shipyards Blohm+Voss and Lürssen (the latter working in co-operation with Kiel-based German Naval Yards). French-based mission system specialist Thales is responsible for the full integration and delivery of the mission and combat systems.

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