On December 17, 2015, ANTONOV Company and «ТAQNIA AERONAUTICS», Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, signed the «Memorandum of Understanding». This document confirms the parties’ intention to deliver 30 multipurpose AN-178 aircraft to Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF).
According to Retired Major General Ali Mohammed Al-Ghamdi, President of «ТAQNIA AERONAUTICS», «Signing of this Memorandum is the next significant step in development of our cooperation. We have signed the documents on interaction within the programme of the AN-132 new transport and further promotion of the AN-148 special-purpose versions. We choose the AN-178 taking into account good characteristics of this aircraft. Its price and low operational costs are important advantages of this aircraft in comparison with other airplanes of this class. Besides, we will realize joint marketing policy on promotion of the AN-178 into the markets of other countries of Middle East. In the future we plan cooperative production of this aircraft».
Oleksandr Kotsiuba, First Vice President of ANTONOV Company, said: «This event became one more confirmation of mutual aspiration of Ukraine and Saudi Arabia in development of strategic partnership in the field of aircraft industry. Signing of this Memorandum verifies that the AN-178 is a modern, reliable and effective airplane, which is requested by customers. We are obliged to our partners and ready to fulfill our obligations in accordance with the signed agreements».
32.95 m/108.1 feet
28.84 m/94.62 feet
10.14 m/33.27 feet
87.32 m2/939.9 feet2
18 tonnes/39,683 lbs
Cargo hold measuring (including ramp)
16.65 m/54.63 feet
Cargo hold measuring (excluding ramp)
12.85 m/42.16 feet
Cargo width at the floor
2.75 m/9 feet
2.75 m/9 feet
Cargo floor area
40 m2/430.5 feet2
Cargo hold volume
125 m3/ 4,414.3 feet3
2 × Progress D-436-148FM Turbofan
445 knots/512 mph/824 km/h
12,200 m/40,026 feet
2,970 NM/3,417.5 miles/5,500 km
Range fully loaded
540 NM/621 miles/1,000 km
The maiden flight of the new AN-178 transport aircraft in the capital Kiev
On 17 December, Airbus Helicopters delivered the first Swedish NH90 in full anti-submarine warfare (ASW) configuration to the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration FMV (Försvarets Materielverk). The fully-qualified rotorcraft has an entirely customized mission system including underwater sonar, tactical radar and high cabin for improved interior space.
«In terms of versatility and customisability, the Swedish NH90 ASW demonstrates the benefits of an integrated, highly powerful, fly-by-wire helicopter platform», said Wolfgang Schoder, Head of Light and Governmental Programmes at Airbus Helicopters. «Specially tailored for its maritime missions and the operative environment in the Baltic Sea, this helicopter is best-suited for the customer’s requirements».
In total, Sweden has ordered 18 NH90, 13 equipped for Search-and-Rescue missions (SAR) and five in ASW configuration. In the frame of today’s delivery, FMV and the manufacturer NHIndustries have also signed a contract to modify four already delivered NH90 from SAR to ASW configuration, bringing the total Swedish NH90 fleet to nine ASW and nine SAR aircraft.
Prior to delivery, the aircraft has been thoroughly tested by the Swedish acceptance team in Donauwörth and over water in Marignane.
Several military services around the globe are already operating the NH90 in search & rescue, tactical transport, ASW or surveillance missions over sea. «With 260 NH90s already delivered to 13 different nations and nearly 100,000 flying hours in operation, this combat-proven helicopter is now confirming its worth at the hands of the most demanding customers around the globe», said Schoder.
Management of the NH90 program is handled by the NHIndustries consortium, which is owned by Airbus Helicopters (62.5%), AgustaWestland (32%), and Stork Fokker (5.5%).
Overall dimensions (rotors turning)
64.18 feet/19.56 m
53.48 feet/16.30 m
17.42 feet/5.31 m
Maximum Gross Weight
23,369 lbs/10,600 kg
Alternate Gross Weight
24,250 lbs/11,000 kg
14,109 lbs/6,400 kg
9,260 lbs/4,200 kg
8,818 lbs/4,000 kg
Single or dual Rescue Hoist
595 lbs/270 kg
Rescue Hoist on ground
880 lbs/400 kg
7-Cell Internal System
4,486 lbs/2,035 kg
Internal Auxiliary Fuel Tanks (each)
882 lbs/400 kg
External Auxiliary Fuel Tanks (each)
644 lbs/292 kg or 1,102 lbs/500 kg
6.56 feet/2.00 m
15.75 feet/4.80 m
5.18 feet/1.58 m
536.78 feet³/15.20 m³
Sliding doors opening
5.25 × 4.92 feet/1.60 × 1.50 m
Rear ramp opening
5.84 × 5.18 feet/1.78 × 1.58 m
NH90 General Performance (Basic Aircraft)
Maximum Cruise Speed*
162 knots/186 mph/300 km/h
Economical Cruise Speed*
140 knots/161 mph/260 km/h
Maximum Rate Of Climb*
2,200 feet/min/11.2 m/sec
One Engine Inoperative (OEI) Rate Of Climb 2 min Rating*
850 feet/min/4.3 m/sec
OEI Rate Of Climb Continuous Rating at 6,560 feet/2,000 m*
The U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM) Life Cycle Management Command (LCMC) has directed Oshkosh Defense, LLC, an Oshkosh Corporation company, to resume work on the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) production contract. The JLTV program fills a critical capability gap for the U.S. Army and Marine Corps by replacing a large portion of the legacy High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) fleet with a light vehicle that provides unprecedented protection, off-road mobility and transportability.
«We are pleased that the JLTV production contract, awarded to Oshkosh in August, is now moving forward to deliver the world’s most capable light tactical vehicle», said U.S. Army Major General (Retired) John M. Urias, executive vice president of Oshkosh Corporation and president of Oshkosh Defense. «Our JLTV is designed to safely transport Soldiers and Marines as they perform their missions ‘outside the wire’ – providing unprecedented off-road speed and mobility on future battlefields that could be virtually anywhere in the world».
The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) dismissed Lockheed Martin’s protest earlier today based on Lockheed’s notice that it intends to file a protest in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Shortly thereafter, the U.S. Army lifted the stop work order and instructed Oshkosh to resume performance of the JLTV contract. According to the JLTV production contract, Oshkosh will begin delivering vehicles within the next 10 months, reaching an expected total volume of nearly 17,000 vehicles, as well as kits and sustainment services over an eight-year period.
«The Army conducted a thorough, methodical procurement including exhaustive testing and evaluation to ensure our troops get the best vehicle», said Urias. «The Oshkosh team and our employees will immediately resume work to deliver JLTVs to our Soldiers and Marines. The JLTV program fills a critical gap in the U.S. military’s current tactical vehicle line-up», said Urias. «The Oshkosh JLTV will give our troops new levels of payload, performance and protection in a platform that was engineered to evolve as new technologies emerge and our adversaries’ tactics change».
In designing its JLTV, Oshkosh leveraged its extensive experience producing and sustaining more than 150,000 heavy, medium and protected Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles for the U.S. and its allies. The JLTV Family of Vehicles is comprised of two seat and four seat variants, as well as a companion Trailer (JLTV-T). The two-seat variant has one base vehicle platform, the Utility (JLTV-UTL). The four-seat variant has two base vehicle platforms, the General Purpose (JLTV-GP) and the Close Combat Weapons Carrier (JLTV-CCWC).
The third of the new Astute Class attack submarines, Artful, has officially been handed over to the Royal Navy. Until now the submarine was owned by Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S), the MOD’s body responsible for procuring and supporting equipment for the Armed Forces. The boat and her crew will now be added to the Royal Navy Fleet alongside the Navy’s other units.
Defence Minister Philip Dunne said: «The handover of Artful to the Royal Navy is another major step in the Astute Class submarine programme, which continues to gather pace. These attack submarines will provide the Royal Navy with the most technologically advanced submarine Britain has ever sent to sea and will be a vital part of UK security for decades to come. They are being funded by our growing Defence budget and our £178 billion investment in equipment, which is delivering the very best possible kit to our Armed Forces».
Following her hand over on Thursday 10 December, the next milestone for the boat will be an official commissioning ceremony in March 2016, where her sponsor, Lady Amanda Zambellas, will formally welcome Artful into the fleet in the home of the UK Submarine Service, HM Naval Base Clyde. Lady Zambellas said: «This is a really important milestone in the life of Artful as she takes her place in the Fleet under the White Ensign. I am extremely proud of my association with the submarine and look forward to her commissioning next year when I will also meet the Ship’s Company that will take her on operations around the world».
Since her arrival on the Clyde in August, Artful has continued her programme of Contractor Sea Trials. Most recently Rear Admiral Submarines John Weale became the first officer to be officially piped onboard the Royal Navy’s newest warship, and there was a change of command from Captain Scott Bower to Commander Stuart Armstrong. «I very much welcome Artful’s firepower, state of the art communications equipment and advanced stealth technologies into the fleet», said Rear Admiral Weale, head of the UK Submarine Service.
Artful is one of seven Astute class submarines being built for the Royal Navy by BAE Systems Marine Services (BAES(MS)) in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, which are progressively replacing the Trafalgar Class submarines. HMS Astute, HMS Ambush, and now Artful, are the first of the Class to be accepted by Navy Command, which is responsible for operating all of the Royal Navy’s vessels.
Rear Admiral Mike Wareham, Director Submarines Acquisition at DE&S, the MOD’s procurement organisation, said: «The handover of Artful to the Royal Navy is a proud moment for DE&S reflecting a key milestone and a significant achievement in the Astute programme. It follows a number of sea trials which have successfully demonstrated the submarine’s capability and means she can now begin to prepare for operations with the Royal Navy».
The next two submarines in the Class, Audacious and Anson, are currently being built in Barrow, with Agamemnon and the unnamed Boat 7 to follow. BAE Systems is responsible for delivering all seven Astute Class submarines and for the design of the successor to the Vanguard class, which will carry the UK’s nuclear deterrent, also based at HM Naval Base Clyde.
Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding division launched USS Ralph Johnson (DDG-114), the company’s 30th Arleigh Burke-class (DDG-51) guided missile destroyer, on December 12. «The last week of translating this quality ship across land and then launching it from our drydock is no small task, and our shipbuilders accomplished it in a very efficient manner», said George Nungesser, Ingalls’ DDG-51 program manager. «All crafts and personnel making up this DDG shipbuilding crew have performed very well, and we were able to launch USS Ralph Johnson (DDG-114) ahead of schedule. It’s a nice milestone to accomplish as we end the year».
Captain Mark Vandroff, the Navy’s DDG-51 class program manager, added, «This is an exciting milestone and represents a significant amount of effort by our Navy and industry team to get the ship to this point. We’re looking forward to completing outfitting efforts, undergoing test and trials and delivering another highly capable asset to our fleet».
Ingalls has built and delivered 28 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers. There are currently four more under construction at Ingalls, including USS Ralph Johnson (DDG-114), which is scheduled to be christened in the spring of 2016. USS John Finn (DDG-113) was christened in May and is expected to undergo sea trials in 2016. USS Paul Ignatius (DDG-117) celebrated her keel-authentication milestone in October and is expected to launch in the first half of 2017. USS Delbert D. Black (DDG-119) started construction in July and is scheduled for keel laying in the second quarter of 2016.
USS Ralph Johnson (DDG-114) is named to honor Pfc. Ralph Henry Johnson, who was awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions that saved others during the Vietnam War. Johnson shouted a warning to his fellow Marines and hurled himself on an explosive device, saving the life of one Marine and preventing the enemy from penetrating his sector of the patrol’s perimeter. Johnson died instantly. The Charleston, S.C., native had only been in Vietnam for two months and a few days when he was killed at the age of 20.
On April 20, 1970, President Richard M. Nixon posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor, the highest recognition and honor a member of the United States military can receive. On September 5, 1991, 23 years after his heroic act, the Veterans Hospital in Charleston was renamed the Ralph H. Johnson Veterans Hospital.
In September 2014, Georgeann McRaven, ship sponsor and wife of retired Admiral William McRaven, former commander, U.S. Special Operations Command, attended the Ralph Johnson keel laying and proclaimed the ship to be «truly and fairly laid».
The highly capable, multi-mission ship can conduct a variety of operations, from peacetime presence and crisis management to sea control and power projection, all in support of the United States’ military strategy. Arleigh Burke-class destroyers are capable of simultaneously fighting air, surface and subsurface battles. The ship contains myriad offensive and defensive weapons designed to support maritime defense needs well into the 21st century.
Ingalls Shipbuilding launched the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer DDG-114 on December 12. The ship is scheduled to be christened in the spring of 2016 (Photo by Andrew Young/HII)
510 feet/156 m
Beam – Waterline
59 feet/18 m
30.5 feet/9.3 m
Displacement – Full Load
9,217 tons/9,363 metric tons
4 General electric LM 2500-30 gas turbines; 2 shafts; 2 CRP (Contra-Rotating) propellers; 100,000 shaft horsepower/75,000 kW
SPY-1D Phased Array Radar and Aegis Combat System (Lockheed Martin); SPS-73(V) Navigation; SPS-67(V)3 Surface Search; 3 SPG-62 Illuminator; SQQ-89(V)6 sonar incorporating SQS-53C hull mounted and SQR-19 towed array sonars used with Mark-116 Mod 7 ASW fire control system
SLQ-32(V)3; Mark-53 Mod 0 Decoy System; Mark-234 Decoy System; SLQ-25A Torpedo Decoy; SLQ-39 Surface Decoy; URN-25 TACAN; UPX-29 IFF System; Kollmorgen Mark-46 Mod 1 Electro-Optical Director
2 embarked SH-60 helicopters ASW operations; RAST (Recovery Assist, Secure and Traverse)
In a third recent construction contract with Damen Shipyards Group, the Royal Moroccan Navy has ordered five Interceptor 1503 vessels. The vessels will be mobilised to combat illegal activities such as terrorism and smuggling in Moroccan waters.
Designed for ultra-fast operations, the Interceptor 1503 can reach speeds of up to 60 knots/69 mph/111 km/h. This impressive figure is achieved by combining an outstanding propulsion system with cutting edge lightweight composite materials.
The power originates from three diesel engines, each driving a separate stern drive. The hull is constructed from fibre-reinforced plastic in an epoxy resin matrix – renowned for its resistance to impact and fatigue as well as its lightweight properties.
Perfectly suited for tracking down and taking appropriate action on illegal activities, the highly manoeuvrable Interceptors have additional space in the cockpit for search and rescue survivors.
As international security issues have heightened over the last decade, Damen has witnessed growing interest in its range of Interceptor vessels. To respond to this demand, the company is continuing to invest in a substantial Research and Development programme to design and build safe, strong and ultra-fast composite vessels.
Although the Interceptor has been in Damen’s portfolio for some time, this latest order for such a highly valued customer is a prime example of such committed research. The five vessels are in fact the first in a new series of reengineered vessels.
All five Interceptor 1503 vessels will be constructed at Damen’s state-of-the-art shipyard specialising in composite vessel construction. The first vessel will be delivered in June 2016 followed thereafter by one vessel every six weeks.
HULL & DECK MATERIAL
Glass & carbon reinforced epoxy
Aluminium 5083 and 6000 series
Anti-smuggling interceptor duties
Bureau Veritas & MCA
Special Service/Interceptor, Coastal area
47.8 feet/14.57 m
9.55 feet/2.91 m
DRAUGHT (DRIVES UP/DOWN)
2.62/3.94 feet/0.8/1.2 m
FUEL OIL (TOTAL)
317 Gallon/1,200 L
PASSENGERS (SLOW SPEED)
ENDURANCE (AT 45 KNOTS/52 MPH/83 KM/H)
155 NM/178 miles/287 km
45 knots/52 mph/83 km/h
60 knots/69 mph/111 km/h
3 × MDS VGT-32 diesel
3 × 373 kW/3500 rpm
Konrad 660 DP
1 × SHHP
Resilient deck fender
Operator Protection Zone with 6 saddle seats
3 × hand operated
2 × electrically driven
Full power steering, manual back-up
Aerosol system in engine room
NAUTICAL, SURVEILLANCE AND COMMUNICATION EQUIPMENT
According to Agence France Presse, Lithuania said on December 11 it would buy 88 German-made armoured fighting vehicles in its biggest-ever military purchase amid concerns over neighbouring Russia. «We have come to the unequivocal opinion to choose and acquire the Boxer Infantry Fighting Vehicles (IFV)», said Lithuania’s defence chief Jonas Vytautas Zukas.
Speaking after a meeting of the State Defence Council, he said the Baltic EU and NATO nation had picked the German-made vehicles out of 12 bids. The first vehicles made by the Artec grouping of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles are expected to arrive in 2017.
Jonas Vytautas Zukas said the price would be disclosed only after the talks with Artec are over, but a government source said the deal could be worth around 400 million euros ($438 million). In its state budget for 2016 approved on Thursday, Lithuania has vowed to raise defence spending by more than a third against this year amid increased concerns over Russia’s actions in Ukraine and military activity in the Baltic area.
In September, Lithuania signed a 16-million-euro deal to buy 21 used self-propelled howitzers from Germany. The United States has meanwhile deployed some military equipment in Lithuania, including its Abrams battle tanks.
The three Baltic States and Poland have also called for a permanent NATO presence in the region to deter Russia but the allies have so far stuck to back-to-back troop rotations.
Combat Weight Maximum
77,162 lbs/35,000 kg
711 hp/530 kW
> 62 mph/100 km/h
27.33 feet/8.33 m
9.81 feet/2.99 m
> 9.65 feet/2.94 m
All around anti-tank mines and anti-personnel landmines, heavy machine gun and artillery fragments
Boeing delivered the fourth and final Peace Eagle Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) aircraft to the Turkish Air Force at Konya Air Base today, completing the Turkish AEW&C fleet and enhancing Turkey’s airspace surveillance and battle management capabilities. This final aircraft includes upgraded software for the platform and the final element of the ground support segment, the Software Support Center (SSC). Previously delivered Peace Eagles will receive the upgraded software soon.
Boeing worked with Turkish industry partners Turkish Aerospace Industries, Turkish Airlines, HAVELSAN and ASELSAN to complete the delivery of the final aircraft as well as establish technology capabilities like the Software Support Center, updated mission simulator software and mission support center software.
«Turkey is currently the only nation in this region with the AEW&C capability. By combining Boeing’s innovative engineering with the expertise provided by local Turkish industry partners, we’ve delivered an advanced world-class airborne surveillance system to our customer», said Aysem Sargin Isil, managing director, Boeing Turkey.
Turkey, Australia and South Korea operate AEW&C platforms.
Based on Boeing’s 737-700 commercial airplane, the 737 AEW&C aircraft’s advanced radar and 10 state-of-the-art mission crew consoles can track airborne and maritime targets simultaneously. The battle management capabilities allow mission crew to direct offensive and defensive forces while maintaining continuous surveillance of the operational area.
737-700 Increased Gross Weight (IGW)
Northrop Grumman «MESA» electronically scanned array radar system with 360 degrees/Air and Maritime modes/200 + NM (230 + miles/370 + km) range/All Weather
The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and the Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) Operational Test Agency, in conjunction with U.S. Pacific Command, U.S. European Command, and Joint Functional Component Command for Integrated Missile Defense, successfully conducted the first intercept flight test today (December 9, Hawaii Standard Time) of a land-based Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) weapon system and SM-3 (Standard Missile) Block IB Threat Upgrade guided missile, launched from the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense Test Complex at the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF), Kauai, Hawaii.
During the test, a target representing a medium-range ballistic missile was air-launched from a U.S. Air Force C-17 aircraft over the broad ocean area southwest of Hawaii. An AN/TPY-2 radar in Forward Based Mode, located at PMRF, detected the target and relayed target track information to the Command, Control, Battle Management, and Communication (C2BMC) system. The Aegis Weapon System at the Aegis Ashore site received track data from C2BMC and used its component AN/SPY-1 radar to acquire, track, and develop a fire control solution to engage the target. The Aegis Weapon System then launched the SM-3 Block IB Threat Upgrade guided missile from its Vertical Launch System. The SM-3’s kinetic warhead acquired the target reentry vehicle, diverted into its path, and destroyed the target using the kinetic force of a direct impact.
The primary purpose of the test, designated Flight Test Operational-02 Event 1a, was to assess the operational effectiveness of the Aegis Ashore capability as part of a larger BMDS architecture. Aegis Ashore uses a nearly identical configuration of the Vertical Launch System, fire control system, and SPY-1 radar currently in use aboard Aegis BMD cruisers and destroyers deployed at sea around the world.
Vice Admiral James D. Syring, MDA Director, said, «Today’s test demonstrated that the same Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense capability that has been fielded at sea and operational for years, will soon be operational ashore as part of the European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA) Phase 2 capability in Romania. I am very proud of the tremendous effort by the entire government/industry team in executing this vitally important mission for our Nation and our allies».
This flight test demonstrates Aegis Ashore capability as an important component of Phase 2 of the EPAA, of which MDA plans to announce a technical capability declaration by the end of this month.
The MDA and the U.S. Navy cooperatively manage the Aegis BMD program.
At this year’s Europort event in Rotterdam, the Damen Shipyards Group unveiled the latest addition to its extensive portfolio. The RHIB 1050 represents the next generation in rigid hull inflatable boats. A 34.4 × 11 feet/10.5 × 3.35 metre multi-mission vessel that can serve as an independent platform or as support for a larger patrol vessel, the RHIB 1050 presents a design that leaves no stone unturned. The end result is a robust package fronting safety, comfort and outstanding performance.
The RHIB 1050 was developed at Damen Shipyards Hardinxveld – no stranger to such vessels having provided numerous examples to the Royal Netherlands Navy over the years. Newbuild Project Manager at the yard Roel Foolen is happy with a job well done: «This is not your average RHIB», he states. «For starters, it’s Lloyds approved. The hull is made of glass reinforced epoxy as opposed to polyester and provided with Lloyd’s approved closed cell, foam core».
Damen’s use of epoxy for the hull will see the RHIB 1050 produced at the group’s specialist composite yard in Antalya, Turkey. The RHIB will be produced in series with a standard hull, open to flexible, client-specified outfitting requirements.
«Further to this, we are also able to provide training in its use», continues Mr. Foolen. «Damen has many years’ experience in building boats for navies and other defence and security bodies», he explains.
Ergonomics are a strong theme running throughout the design. Damen developed the layout using a mock-up console, constantly tweaking the positioning of instrumentation, seating and controls until completely satisfied with comfort levels. Consequently, the wheel and throttle are perfectly aligned with the suspension seating and handles and grips are located strategically throughout the RHIB.
«We’ve aimed to cover every detail – for example including steps to facilitate easy, fast exit of the RHIB in boarding ops and integration of hoisting eyes into the bollards, simultaneously removing a trip hazard and taking advantage of every available bit of space».
Another example of this philosophy at work is the unique use of D-shaped tubing, rather than the conventional cylindrical tubing. «Doing this allows us to combine the console and the engines into a single, space saving unit. Usually this would not be possible as such a unit would impede access to the fore of the vessel. However, with a section of tubing removed, there is still space for on board personnel to pass safely and comfortably fore to aft», explains Mr. Foolen.
This focused planning has also brought about a vessel that is notably easy to maintain. The 2 x 350 litre/2 x 94 gallon fuel tanks are located beneath the 10 deck-based seats. The seats are fitted to a dedicated hatch so, in the event the tanks require removing, the seating is simply lifted clear.
Similarly, the entire console unit is hinged at the aft so that it can be very easily moved clear when access is necessary to the 2 × 370 hp/2 × 276 kW Volvo Penta engines. The mast is also hinged so that it can be quickly folded away for transport height.
«As well as easy maintenance, the RHIB 1050 is also low maintenance», states Mr. Foolen. «We’ve used high-end materials and taken every step to ensure components are protected. Console instrumentation is located behind a heated, watertight window for example. And all electrics are housed in a dedicated, heated and ventilated compartment inside the dry storage area. Furthermore, the stern platform, as well as being perfectly situated for diving and man overboard operations, works in combination with the tube ends to form a protective barrier for the stern drives. At the front of the vessel, the nose is flattened to serve as a fender during boarding operations and the tubing is fitted to the vessel with aluminium extrusions, as opposed to glue. This not only offers a better grip, but also makes it easier to remove and replace when necessary», Mr. Foolen explains.
Of course, with such a vessel, performance is also of fundamental importance. Here too, the RHIB 1050 is not found wanting. «During sea trials, the handling, manoeuvrability and balance have proven to be excellent. It is very safe also, very forgiving and perfect in rough, harsh water. She’s quick too – able to sail at speeds of over 50 knots/57.5 mph/92.6 km/h».
Damen is currently building a second RHIB 1050, which will feature 2 × 400 hp/2 × 298 kW outboard engines.
With a cutting-edge, ergonomically designed layout and highly efficient, top quality performance, the Damen RHIB 1050 represents the next generation in rigid hull inflatable boats