Future FGS Sachsen Anhalt, the German Navy’s third F125 class frigate, set sail for first time on February 22 for a series of in-port trials.
During the next two weeks, shipbuilders and navy officials will test the ship’s technical systems and equipment, including its propulsion system, maneuvering behavior and technical operations.
The trials will take the ship from Hamburg via the river Elbe to the North Sea before returning to Hamburg after completing the test program.
In addition to technical specialists from the German defense procurement agency BAAINBw, the testing team from the ARGE F125 consortium and employees of other companies involved, members of the future naval crew are also on board.
Following the Baden-Württemberg and the Nordrhein-Westfalen, the Sachsen-Anhalt is now the third of the F125 class frigates to take to the open seas. Sachsen Anhalt was launched in March 2016 while the fourth and final ship in the class was launched in May 2017.
The ARGE F125 consortium which is responsible for the delivery of ships comprises thyssenkrupp Marine Systems as the lead company and Fr. Lürssen Werft in Bremen. The pre-fitted bow sections were manufactured at the Fr. Lürssen Werft shipyards in Bremen and Wolgast. Construction of the stern sections, the joining of the two sections and further fitting out is being carried out at Blohm+Voss Shipyards in Hamburg under the direction of thyssenkrupp Marine Systems.
The F125 class ships are envisioned as having an extremely high degree of automation with approximately 28,000 electric devices, permitting a significantly smaller crew size compared with previous frigate classes.
The complex systems responsible for the frigate’s automation have posed problems on the lead ship in the class and have resulted, among other factors, in the frigate’s return to the shipbuilder for repairs.
F125 frigates are a new class of ships set to replace the eight Bremen-Class frigates currently in service with the German Navy.
They will be armed with HARPOON and RAM missiles, one 127 mm machine gun, two 27 mm and five 12.7 mm guns. The 150-meter ships will have a complement capacity of 190 persons and a maximum speed of 26 knots.