HMS Richmond prepares for busy summer deployment
The Type 23 frigate spent time in the Arctic working alongside aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales and other NATO allies at the start of the year during the largest military exercises in the region for 30 years.
Richmond tested her weapons, sensors and her ability to remain silent – an important aspect of her main role as an anti-submarine warfare frigate.
In UK waters, she tested which of her equipment is the quietest and therefore the most effective for hunting submarines. During these operations, the ship and her sailors are required to minimise how much noise they are making, from tying down all loose kit to keeping movement on board to a minimum.
Lieutenant Commander David Tinsley, Weapon Engineer Officer, said: “With a renewed appreciation of our acoustic signature, we are now well-placed to locate and track enemy submarines, which is critical as we build towards a busy summer of operations.”
While in Norway, Richmond conducted Operational Capability Confidence Checks – ensuring her weapons, communications and sensors are all in good working order.
Carried out at NATO’s Joint Warfare Centre in Stavanger, the deep-dive into the ship’s key operating systems ensured she was ready to operate and train alongside allies.
“Proving our whole combat system at the NATO range in Norway sets Richmond up for success in the next period of operations,” Lt Cdr Tinsley added.
“Along with firing of our medium calibre gun and torpedo systems, we have assured our lethality in all warfare domains.”
After a quick pitstop in her home port of Plymouth, Richmond returned to sea for an intense period of emergency drills and further weapons testing.
The ship’s company thoroughly tested her 4.5 inch gun and torpedo launch system while also conducting flying serials. It was then time to test the sailors’ abilities to react to emergency situations such as chemical and radiological attacks.