On Thursday 10 March, the coastguard vessel KV «Bjørnøya» arrived at Vard Langsten in Tomrefjord. Since 16 February, the vessel has been towed from Vard Tulcea’s shipyard in Romania to Norway. The actual tow was expected to take about a month, but due to good weather conditions, the vessel arrived earlier than expected.
KV «Bjørnøya» is the second vessel in the Jan Mayen class to take over for the robust Nordkapp class, which will soon be retired after more than 40 years in faithful service for the Armed Forces. During the next year, KV «Bjørnøya» will transfer from being a hull, to becoming a full-fledged coastguard vessel, says project manager Odd Magne Nilsen in NDMA.
Before the vessels become operational, they must be equipped and have the necessary equipment installed for the operations in which they are to participate.
It is important that the vessels are equipped with the capacities necessary to patrol and solve imposed tasks throughout Norway’s area of interest, including Arctic waters, Nilsen explains.
The first vessel will be handed over to the Armed Forces in 2022
The main contract between NDMA and VARD to build three helicopter-carrying and ice-reinforced vessels, was signed 25 June 2018. The acquisition of the coastguard vessels is one of the largest defense acquisitions ever made in the maritime sector.
The proportion of Norwegian subcontractors is large and contributes to further developing national competence and capacity within the maritime industry, Odd Magne Nilsen explains.
The first coastguard vessel «Jan Mayen» arrived in Norway last year and the vessel is now equipped at VARD Langsten in Tomrefjord.
The equipment of the first hull, arriving at the yard in September 2021, is now entering a new phase with completion, commissioning, and an extensive test period. Getting the hull of the second vessel to the yard now, is a good fit and in accordance with our plans. This contributes to a good transfer of experience by using the same workers on both vessels, and that we get a steady load on the yard in the coming months, says project manager Roar Gjerde in VARD.
According to plan, «Jan Mayen» will be handed over to the Armed Forces in the autumn of 2022. There will be an intensive period ahead before preparing the vessel for delivery. With its capacities and ability to operate in the entire area of interest to Norway, including Arctic waters, the Coast Guard vessel will be an important resource. KV «Bjørnøya» is planned to be delivered to the Armed Forces in 2023, while KV «Hopen» will be delivered in 2024.
By 2024, the Coast Guard’s vessels in the Nordkapp class will be replaced by the Jan Mayen class. The acquisition of the three new coastguard vessels «KV Jan Mayen», «KV Bjørnøya» and «KV Hopen» is one of the largest defense acquisitions ever made in the maritime sector in Norway.
The vessels will be handed over from VARD to the Norwegian Defence Materiel Agency (NDMA) in 2022, 2023 and 2024.
The hulls of the Jan Mayen class are built at VARD Tulcea in Romania, before being towed to VARD Langsten in Tomrefjord in Norway to be equipped, tested and completed.
The tow of the second vessel in the Jan Mayen class, KV Bjørnøya, started on Wednesday 16 February.
The main contract to build three helicopter-carrying and ice-reinforced vessels between the NDMA and VARD was signed on 25 June 2018. The vessels will solve imposed tasks throughout Norway’s area of interest, including Arctic waters. Strict requirements are set for the vessels’ seaworthy properties, strength, stability, helicopter availability, sensors and communication and control capacity.
The proportion of Norwegian subcontractors is large in the offer from VARD and will contribute to further developing national competence and capacity within the maritime industry.
The vessels must be able to cooperate with and support civilian units and military units.