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RSN Endurance class LPD 2.jpg
RSS Endurance, RSS Persistence and RSS Endeavour in Meulaboh, Indonesia as part of 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami humanitarian relief efforts © MINDEF
Class overview
Name: Endurance
Builders: ST Engineering (Marine)
Operators:  Republic of Singapore Navy
 Royal Thai Navy
Preceded by: County class
Building: 1
Completed: 4
Active: 4
General characteristics
Type: Landing platform dock
Displacement: 6,500 tonnes (light)
8,500 tonnes (full)
Length: 141.0 m (463 ft)
Beam: 21.0 m (69 ft)
Draught: 5.0 m (16 ft)
Ramps: 2 × (bow and stern)
Installed power: 4 × Ruston 6RK215 diesel generators (700 kW each)
Propulsion: 2 × Ruston 16RK 270 diesels (5000 kW each) coupled to 2 × Kamewa controllable pitch propellers
Bow thruster
Speed: 15 knots (28 km/h) to 20 knots (37 km/h)
Range: 5,000 nautical miles (9,000 km) at 15 knots (28 km/h)
Boats and landing
craft carried:
4 × 13 m Fast Craft Equipment & Utility (FCEU) on davits
2 × 25 m Fast Craft Utility (FCU) inside well deck
Capacity: 18 tanks, 20 vehicles and bulk cargo
Troops: 350
Crew: 65 (8 officers and 57 men)
Sensors and
processing systems:
Search radar: IAI/ELTA EL/M-2238
Navigation radar: Kelvin Hughes Type 1007 (I band)
Weapon control: CS Defense NAJIR 2000 electro-optronic director
Electronic warfare
and decoys:
ESM/ECM: RAFAEL RAN 1101
Decoys: 2 × GEC Marconi Marine Shield III 102 mm sextuple fixed chaff/decoy launcher
Armament: Anti-air: Mistral missiles launched from 2 × Simbad twin launcher mounts
Main gun: Oto Melara 76 mm super rapid gun
Machine guns: 2 × M242 Bushmaster 25 mm automatic cannon
4 × CIS 50MG 12.7 mm HMG
Aircraft carried: AS 332M Super Puma or AS532UL/AL Cougar or CH-47SD Chinook helicopters
Aviation facilities: Flight deck and enclosed hangar for up to 2 medium-lift helicopters
Notes: Ships in class include:
RSS Endurance (207)
RSS Resolution (208)
RSS Pesistence (209)
RSS Endeavour (210)

The Endurance class landing platform dock ships are the biggest class of ships in the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN). They were designed and built locally by Singapore Technologies (ST) Marine to replace the old County class tank landing ships (LST). The four ships form the 191 Squadron of the RSN.

Contents

History

The navy's intention to purchase the Endurance class was revealed by former Defence Minster Dr. Tony Tan during his visit to Tuas Naval Base on 3 August 1996. These ships were to replace the five ex-United States Navy (USN) County class LSTs, which were acquired by Singapore from the United States in the 1970s. ST Marine was awarded the government contract to design and build the four ships - a significant milestone for the local defence and shipbuilding industries given the scale and extensiveness of the programme.

Construction of the Endurance began in early 1997, with the keel laid down at ST Marine's Benoi yard on 27 March 1997.

Name Pennant Number Launched Commissioned
RSS Endurance 207 14 March 1998 18 March 2000
RSS Resolution 208 1 August 1998 18 March 2000
RSS Persistence 209 13 March 1999 7 April 2001
RSS Endeavour 210 12 February 2000 7 April 2001


Design & construction

Port stern view of RSS Endeavour at sea
A Republic of Singapore Air Force Super Puma takes off from the flight deck of the RSS Resolution. Visible in the foreground is the ASIST system

The Endurance class is 40% larger than the previous County class that she replaced but yet travels almost twice as fast as its predecessor, despite its larger size. Each ship is fitted with a well dock which can accommodate four landing craft, as well as a flight deck which can accommodate two medium lift helicopters.[1]

While the RSN describes the Endurance class as LSTs, they lack the beaching capability traditionally associated with LSTs and their well docks and flight decks qualify the Endurance class more as amphibious transport docks. The term "multipurpose support vessel" is closer to the intent of its use, given the necessary limited objectives of the RSN as a small naval force operating primarily in littoral waters.

The Endurance class was built with a heavy emphasis on automation. RSS Endurance became the first ship in the world to use official electronic navigational charts with the Electronic Chart Display and Information System (ECDIS) to circumnavigate the world.[2] The integrated bridge system allows the operator to access the navigation and communications systems, the ECDIS and other vital systems needed to sail the ship effectively, while the Ship Control, Monitoring and Management System controls, monitors and manages most of the platforms onboard. The ships are also equipped with a Aircraft Ship Integrated Secure and Traverse (ASIST) system which helps in landing, securing, manoeuvring and traversing a helicopter, and eliminates the need for deck personnel to secure helicopters upon landing.[3] All these result in a high degree of automation, with a reduced manning requirement of 65 crew members for a 6500-tonne ship.[4]

Operations

"Simbad" twin Mistral missile launcher mount

The ships provide sea transportation for personnel and equipment for Singapore Armed Forces' overseas training, as well as a training platform for RSN's midshipmen. RSS Endurance became the first RSN ship to circumnavigate the globe when it participated in the 6th USN International Naval Review in New York City,[5] passing through both Panama and Suez canals.

The ships actively participate in various multilateral exercises annually. RSS Resolution successfully fired a Mistral surface-to-air missile during Exercise Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training in 2000, an annual joint naval exercise between the USN and RSN.[6] RSS Endurance participated as both a compliant and non-compliant vessel for boarding teams during Exercise Sea Sabre in 2004 as part of the Proliferation Security Initiative.[7]

The ships are active participants in multinational peacekeeping efforts. As part of Singapore’s contribution to the reconstruction efforts in Iraq, RSS Endurance was sent to the Persian Gulf in October 2003 for two months.[8] RSS Resolution followed in November 2004 and RSS Endeavour in February 2006.[9][10] The ships conducted logistical tasks, such as replenishing supplies for other naval vessels in the Persian Gulf, and conducted patrols to enforce maritime presence. They also served as a platform for helicopter missions and maritime boarding operations missions by teams from other coalition countries when they inspected ships leaving Iraq. The last deployment saw the RSS Resolution taking on the expanded role of taking charge of coalition and Iraqi Navy ships to defend Iraq's oil platforms.[11] On 1 September 2007, RSS Persistence became the fourth ship to be deployed to the Persian Gulf in support of the multinational reconstruction efforts in Iraq.[12] RSS Resolution was subsequently tasked for RSN's fifth deployment to the Gulf on 30 August 2008.[13]

The ships were also involved in various humanitarian relief operations, such as the tsunami-hit Indonesian province of Aceh in 2004. Within a few days of the disaster, the RSS Endurance sailed to Aceh in Indonesia to deliver emergency supplies and medical personnel to aid in the relief efforts. She was then joined by RSS Persistence on 4 January 2005 and RSS Endeavour on 16 January.[14]

On 12 February 2009, the Minister of Defence Teo Chee Hean announced that the RSS Persistence will be deployed with two Super Puma helicopters for three months in 2009. The ship will work with the multi-national Combined Task Force 151 to protect shipping in the Gulf of Aden.[15]

Export

On 11 November 2008, a SGD $200M contract was signed between ST Engineering (Marine) and Thailand for the sale of one unit of the Endurance class LPD[16]. The LPD would use the Terma C-Series system which includes the C-Flex combat management system, C-Search radar suite which includes the SCANTER 4100 radar and IFF and the C-Fire fire control system[17].

See also

References

  1. ^ "Characteristics of the Endurance class LST". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/news_and_events/nr/2001/apr/07apr01_nr/07apr01_fs.html. Retrieved 2004-09-26.  
  2. ^ "International Dimension". United Kingdom Hydrographic Office. http://www.ukho.gov.uk/content/corpAttachments/ar/report_pages/international_dimension.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  3. ^ "DSTA equips RSN with technologically advanced Landing Ship Tanks". DSTA. http://www.dsta.gov.sg/home/DisplayPage/sideContentPage10.asp?id=1190. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  4. ^ "Factsheet - New Landing Ship Tank". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/news_and_events/nr/1999/mar/12mar99_nr/12mar99_fs.html. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  5. ^ "Speech by Dr Tony Tan Keng Yam, Deputy Prime Minister & Minister for Defence, on the Occasion of the Commissioning Ceremony for the RSN Landing Ship Tank, RSS Endurance & RSS Resolution Held on Saturday, 18 March 2000 at 10:00 AM at Tuas Naval Base". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/resources/speeches/2000/18mar00_speech.html. Retrieved 2006-10-17.  
  6. ^ "Landing Ship Tanks". National Library Board. http://infopedia.nlb.gov.sg/articles/SIP_539_2005-01-05.html. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  7. ^ "Sea Sabre". Global Security. http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ops/sea-saber.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  8. ^ "SAF Deploys LST and C-130 to Assist in Reconstruction of Iraq". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/news_and_events/nr/2003/oct/27oct03_nr.html.print.html?Status=1. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  9. ^ "SAF Landing Ship Tank Deployment to Aid in the Reconstruction of Iraq". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/news_and_events/nr/2004/nov/27nov04_nr.html.print.html?Status=1. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  10. ^ "SAF Landing Ship Tank Deployment to Aid in the Reconstruction of Iraq". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/news_and_events/nr/2006/feb/04feb06_nr.html.print.html?Status=1. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  11. ^ "A taste of home after successful Gulf deployment". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/publications/cyberpioneer/news/2006/May/29may06_news4.html.print.html?Status=1. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  12. ^ "SAF Landing Ship Tank Deployment to the Gulf". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/news_and_events/nr/2007/sep/01sep07_nr2.html.print.html?Status=1. Retrieved 2007-09-01.  
  13. ^ "Fifth Deployment of Landing Ship Tank to the Gulf to Support Reconstruction of Iraq". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/news_and_events/nr/2008/aug/30aug08_nr2.html.print.html?Status=1. Retrieved 2009-03-25.  
  14. ^ "2000 - The LSTs of 191 Squadron". MINDEF. http://www.mindef.gov.sg/imindef/about_us/history/maturing_saf/v10n03_history.html. Retrieved 2007-04-21.  
  15. ^ "Singapore to join anti-piracy efforts in Gulf of Aden". Channel NewsAsia. 12 February 2009. http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/408523/1/.html.  
  16. ^ "ST Engineering's Marine Arm Secures S$200m Contract To Design And Build Landing Platform Dock". STE. http://www.stengg.com/pressroom/press_releases_read.aspx?paid=1317. Retrieved 2009-10-11.  
  17. ^ "C-Series Combat System from Terma to the Royal Thai Navy’s Landing Platform Dock". Terma. http://www.terma.com/index.dsp?page=3233#. Retrieved 2009-10-11.  

External links

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