German Naval Yards Kiel (GNYK) withdrew its request to review the German Navy’s decision to award the MKS 180 multi-purpose combat ship contract to Dutch shipyard Damen.
The withdrawal of the complaint was announced by German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer.
“I am very pleased that the award procedure for the multipurpose combat ship 180 can now continue! Until the summer break, I will ask Parliament to approve the budget and I am very optimistic that we can conclude a contract for the MKS180 this year”, said the minister.
Following the withdrawal of the review application, the public procurement tribunal officially discontinued the review procedure. With this new development, Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding BV is now officially the winner of the tender for the construction of the MKS 180 vessels.
According to Damen, the MKS 180 ships will be built at Blohm + Voss shipyard in Hamburg, Germany and at other shipyard locations of the Lürssen Group, the parent company of Blohm+Voss, in northern Germany. The company said that it intends to build the MKS 180 frigates in this way in order to spend around 80% of the total net investment as added value in Germany.
The withdrawal came amid the announcement of long-term cooperation between Lürssen and German Naval Yards Kiel (GNYK).
According to the announcement, the existing military and naval surface shipbuilding activities of the two companies are to be contributed to a joint company and led by the Bremen-based Lürssen Group.
“The objective of the combination is to improve the structure of the German shipbuilding industry and to bolster its efficiency and sustainability”, said a GNYK statement.
MKS 180 (Mehrzweckkampfschiff 180, Multi-Purpose Combat Ship) frigates are the new class of multi-mission frigates under development for the German Navy.
The frigates will be capable of being equipped with different installation modules designed for specific military missions. The modularity of the ships brings several advantages: mission modules that are not required can be stored and serviced regardless of the ship’s platform. The modules do not have to be procured for each ship and can also be purchased independently of this. In the event of changing operating conditions and further developed technology, only the module may need to be modernized. And the standardized interfaces onboard make it possible to develop new types of modules.
According to the German Navy, the MKS 180 frigates will be around 155 meters long with a maximum displacement of 9,000 tons.
The larger size of the new warships compared to the German Navy’s previous ships is because, among other things, they need enough space for the different modules. For comparison, the Navy’s operational F125 Baden-Württemberg class frigates are five meters shorter and almost 2,000 tons smaller. And these ships are almost twice the size of the F122 Bremen-class frigates.
The MKS multi-purpose combat ship will take on some features from the Baden-Württemberg class frigates including automation and low maintenance of the technical systems, as well as the multi-crew concept. This will allow these new ships to remain in the area of operation for up to two years, while the roughly 110-strong crew rotates every four months.
The vessels will have a permanent crew of 110 personnel and will have the capability to embark on 70 additional personnel who specialize in the mission modules. The vessels are intended to have a service life of 30 years.