Singapore Orders Four Fassmer Offshore Patrol Vessels
The four Offshore Patrol Vessels will begin deliveries in 2028, replacing the Republic of Singapore Navy’s four Sentinel-class Maritime Security Response Vessels.
Singapore’s Ministry of Defense announced on 20 November that it had signed a contract with Germany’s Fr. Fassmer GmbH & Co. KG to acquire four new Offshore Patrol Vessels.
The four Offshore Patrol Vessels are being purchased to replace the Republic of Singapore Navy’s four Sentinel-class Maritime Security Response Vessels. Deliveries of the new vessels are to be made from 2028 onwards, with the Maritime Security Response Vessels to remain in operational service until the new vessels are delivered and fully operational.
According to the ministry, the Offshore Patrol Vessels will be based on Fassmer’s OPV 80 design as used by the German Bundespolizei (Federal Police) for its Potsdam class of offshore patrol vessels. They will be designed with “high manoeuvrability to operate in Singapore’s congested waters, and equipped with a suite of lethal and less-lethal capabilities to provide flexibility and calibrated response against a wide spectrum of maritime threats.”
Naval News learned during IMDEX Asia 2023 that three firms were competing: Fassmer, Luerssen and ST Engineering with a domestic OPV design. Contacted by Naval News, Fassmer declined to comment this contract award.
The Potsdam Class Offshore Patrol Vessel
The Potsdam class of offshore patrol vessels is currently composed of four ships, Potsdam, Bamberg, Bad Düben and Neustadt. Neustadt is the last ship to have entered service, being commissioned in June 2023.
The vessels are 86.02 meters long and 13.42 meters wide. They are all powered by two Wartsila diesel engines that each generate 4,080 kilowatts, augmented by two 600 kW electric motors, driving controllable pitch propellers that propel them to a top speed of 21 knots.
All vessels are equipped with a single BAE Systems Bofors 57 Mk3 57mm gun as their main armament, with two .50 caliber machine guns as additional armament.
Vessels of the Potsdam class are equipped with a helicopter landing deck that can accommodate the Federal Police’s Airbus Helicopters H215 Super Puma, and have internal room for five mission containers.
The Sentinel Class Maritime Security and Response Vessel
The Sentinel class is composed of MSRV Sentinel, MSRV Guardian, MSRV Protector and MSRV Bastion. All four vessels are refurbished and renamed Fearless-class patrol vessels that were previously in service with the Republic of Singapore Navy, serving with its Maritime Security and Response Flotilla after their refurbishing.
The 55 meter-long vessels retain the Fearless-class’ main armament of a single OTO Melara 76mm naval gun. As part of their refurbishment, the Sentinel class received a Typhoon 25mm naval gun system at the stern and 7.62mm machine gun positions near the bridge wings.
The Sentinel class are equipped with long-range acoustic device (LRAD) and laser dazzler systems for non-lethal options. The superstructures of the vessels have been upgraded with a modular ballistic protection system, while their hulls have been strengthened with fenders so they can come alongside vessels of interest.
Two of the Sentinel-class’ non-refurbished siblings, the former RSS Brave and RSS Gallant, were transferred as a gift to the Royal Brunei Navy in March this year. In Bruneian service, the RSS Brave is now the KDB As-Siddiq, with the RSS Gallant becoming the KDB Al-Faruq.