BAE to begin manufacture of Type 26 early next year

BAE Systems has awarded the first equipment manufacturing contracts for the Type 26 Global Combat Ship worth more than £170million. The anti-submarine frigate will replace the aging Type 23, with delivery of the first three vessels beginning one per annum from 2020.

The contracts progress development of the vessel, 'with metal being cut' early next year on key components including the turbine, gearbox, and mission bay handling system.

The contractors include Babcock, GE Power Conversion, Raytheon, Rolls Royce and David Brown Gear Systems – many of which are currently in the process of creating purpose built facilities.

Geoff Searle, Type 26 programme director at BAE Systems, said: "Today's announcement is exciting for everyone involved, as it will enable our partners in the the supply chain to start manufacturing key equipment for the first three ships. This reinforces the strong momentum behind the programme and is an important step towards the start of manufacturing the Type 26 ships for the Royal Navy in Glasgow next year."

BAE currently expects to deliver 13 Type 26 ships to the Royal Navy, which will remain in service until as late as 2060. The vessels will be expected to quickly adapt roles from high intensity warfare to humanitarian assistance, and will be able to operate independently as well as part of a task group.

Justin Cunningham

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