The Philippine Navy’s first missile-capable frigate, BRP Jose Rizal (FF-150), commenced its journey home from South Korea on 18 May, navy chief Vice Admiral Giovanni Carlo Bacordo told local radio news.
The frigate, one of two mulitrole frigates ordered in 2016 at a cost of $337 million under the Horizon 1 phase of the Revised AFP Modernisation Programme, was due to depart shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries’ (HHI’s) facility in Ulsan and is expected to arrive in Subic Bay on 23 May.
BRP Jose Rizal (FF-150)
The José Rizal-class is derived from HHI’s HDF-3000 design, which is in turn a variant of the Incheon-class frigates commissioned into Republic of Korea Navy (RoKN) service between 2013 and 2016.
The frigate has an overall length of 351 feet (107 metres) with a beam of 46ft (14m), and is powered by a combined diesel and diesel (CODAD) propulsion system that enables it to operate out to 4,500 nautical miles at a cruising speed of 15 knots. It can also sprint at speeds of over 25kts.
The ship has an integral helicopter deck and hangar to support a medium naval helicopter. This will likely be one of two Leonardo AW159 naval helicopters that were recently acquired.
Its armaments comprise the Oto Melara Super Rapid 76mm naval gun and an Aselsan SMASH 30mm remote weapon station, two MBDA SIMBAD-RC short-range surface to air missile (SAM) systems, and 324mm triple-tube torpedo launchers. Four anti-ship missile (ASM) launchers round off its surface warfare capabilities. The vessel is also fitted for, but yet to be equipped with, an eight-cell vertical launch system (VLS) for Surface-to-Air (SAM) missiles.
BRP Jose Rizal was originally intended to be delivered in late April but was delayed by challenges introduced by the COVID-19 pandemic. Its sister ship, BRP Antonio Luna (FF-151), is expected to be delivered by the end of 2020.
by Jr Ng