Domestic defence equipment maker Patria handed over on Wednesday the first of four renovated and updated Hamina-class missile cutter ships to the military at the Uppiniemi naval base in southern Finland.
Work on retrofitting and overhauling the ships began about two years ago at the beginning of 2018, according to a navy press release issued Wednesday.
The navy said the upgrade of its Hamina-class missile cutters is a key factor in enabling the military’s combat capability in the coming years.
A total of four of the boats will be overhauled by 2021, when all of the new technologies made possible by the renovations will be utilised, according to the navy. The total cost of the Hamina renovation project amounted to around 223 million euros.
Renovations extend service lifetime
Among other things, the renovations will improve the vessels’ abilities to take combat below the surface, particularly with the help of underwater torpedoes and variable depth sonar (VDS) systems.
Next year the boats will also be outfitted with additional anti-aircraft defence gear. Its torpedo system will be tested later this year..
The navy said the updates will enable the Hamina-class boats to be used well into the 2030s, and Navy Rear Admiral Jori Harju said the renovation project has helped to give the fleet a new peak in capabilities.
“The lifetime extensions made the Hamina-class missile boats more versatile and more capable than before. With the torpedo system we now have a military capability of an entirely new kind at our disposal. The performance improvements were built on successful materials and educational collaboration with Sweden,” Harju stated in the release.