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Canada’s Destroyer Replacement

March 20, 2010

Looking very unarmed yet very potent is the Canadian guided missile destroyer HMCS Algonquin, a Tribal class warship.

Previously, New Wars has offered suggestions for low-cost alternatives to restore the Canadian Navy, suffering as many Western fleets from difficulties in replacing aging Cold War equipment stocks. Proposals have included off the shelf versions of foreign designed corvettes, submarines, and motherships, which shouldn’t be considered less capable than high end destroyers and frigates, but the right choices for current threats facing modern militaries. Thanks to new technology, small warships can also perform many of the varied function once expected of high performance multimission platforms.

It is easy to see though why Canada would want to replace its large, though very antiquated Tribal class destroyers. The Navy, despite being small (currently about 33 warships) has always operated alongside the premier Western naval powers, whether the British Empire or the United States superpower. It is clear current classes of destroyers might be likened to “new battleships” considering their immense anti-air, ant-surface, and anti-submarine capabilities. There is no reason why rich and technically advanced Canada wouldn’t want to possess such effective combat vessels.

The Unlikely Solution

Few in the Navy think they will get a new destroyer replacement anytime soon, and that is sad. It isn’t so much a lack of will as a lack of funds, as each successive government promises to deal with the nation’s equipment woes, until reality sets in. The cost of modern weapons being so high, you even see the mighty American juggernaut with an embarrassingly bloated budget unable to recoup combat losses and replace aging equipment one-on-one. Here are some preliminary specs:

  • Displacement-6000 tons full
  • Length-143 meters
  • Speed-30 knots
  • Armament-• 24 × Honeywell Mk 46 Mod 5 torpedoes
    • 24-48 × RIM-161 SM-3 surface-to-air missiles
    • 8-16 × RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile
    • 8-16 × Boeing RGM-84 Harpoon surface-to-surface missiles
    • 1 × 57 mm Bofors Mk3 gun
    • 2 × 20 mm Vulcan Phalanx Mk15 CIWS
    • 6 × .50 caliber (12.7 mm) heavy machine guns
  • Aircraft-Hangar for 1x CH-148 Cyclone helicopter

These Single Class Surface Combatants (SCSC) will be known as “Province class” destroyers, obviously named after the nation’s provinces, replacing the remaining Iroquois or Tribal class DDGs. It is also possible that if built, they will combine as a Halifax frigate successor in the same hull. It was originally intended for a Batch 2 Halifax to be 33 feet longer to carry the extra sensors needed, but these vessels were constructed to the Batch 1 standard for cost savings.

The Ideal Solution

The 6200 ton Spanish Navy frigate Alvaro de Bazan (F101).

The Navy has looked at European designs for its destroyer replacement, mainly concerning retrofitting the Smart-L radar used in Dutch and German vessels to the existing  frigates. Because of size issues (the frigates would be top-heavy), this has been rejected, so another plan might be to simply order vessels from overseas, or copy them for construction in Canadian yards. Candidates might include the F-100 class for Spain and Norway, but also the German MEKO type that is export ready.

The Norwegian Nansen especially corresponds to the dimensions of Halifax, and is currently the smallest vessel to carry the Aegis combat system, the AN/SPY-1F, (though an even smaller version called the AN/SPY-1K is on the market). Ships of this class also price at $326 million each, or about 1/6 the cost of an American Burke DDG. The slightly larger, and more potent Spanish F100 carries the longer range Standard missile as opposed to the Nansen’s Sea Sparrow ESSM. An intriguing alternative is the Danish Ivar Huitfeldt, based on the respected Absalon hull, and of roughly the same dimensions as the Spanish and Norwegian ships.

The Sensible Solution

Considering the success of the Tribal updates from the 1990s, transforming these conventionally armed ASW escorts into very potent guided missile destroyers, it seems natural that the Halifax ships, already undergoing a Frigate Life Extension program would be considered for the same treatment. Such a proposal has been looked into by the Navy, and judged undesirable since the placing of large phased-array type radars on the 5000 ton frigate hull would likely make them top heavy.

HMCS Charlottetown (FFH 339), one of 12 Halifax class frigates.

Basically the same consideration did not hinder the USN in the 1970s placing the first generation of Aegis radar on the similar sized Spruance class destroyer. Nor has it seemed to negate the effectiveness of this revolutionary class of warship, and there seems little hindrance that smaller versions of the amazing Spy-1 radar deployed since might be fitted onto the Canadian ships. Other considerations might be removing the gun or helicopter hanger should the space be necessary.

Perhaps the Halifax DDG could benefit from some proposals offered here at New Wars, such as placing the Aegis or European Apar on a “mothership“, which would be a non-combat vessel except for point defenses. The size and capability of such an alternative would be virtually unlimited and unhindered by the space constraints of a combat vessel. Other considerations might be using unmanned aerial vehicles and targeting platforms or satellites, as discussed at Aviation Week.

A small cadre of large exquisite ships like 4-6 upgraded Halifax might be sufficient, for homeland defense and overseas deployments. These would be backed by a larger force of 30 or more small patrol ships, OPVs and corvettes, combining he duties of the current general purpose frigates and the planned Arctic Patrol Ships. To expedite procurement and reduce costs, these should be off the shelf, and a foreign design is very desirable here. They would be supported by New Wars’ own proposal for a Joint Support Ship, which could also do overseas deployments in place of frigates.

If possible, at least 10 coastal submarines should be procured, very small to replace the 4 large Victoria class.


The Threats Based Canadian Navy

The destroyer replacement requirement might be looked at in terms of future strategy, in other words, what does the nation need to contend with modern and potential threats? Historically that entails defense of the homeland and various treaty commitments as with NATO and the UN. Currently, the new threats of this century have evolved into concern over foreign encroachments into Canada’s arctic territories and supporting the ongoing War on Terror overseas.

Naturally you would want to build a fleet to match the threat, and the temptation may be to try to fit something that was adequate for the last century conflicts into the present problems of sea power. Having to spend exorbitant funds on the Army in Afghanistan means the Navy has been underfunded for a decade, after just passing through a previous decade of the 1990s short of cash, owing to the “Peace Dividend” after the Fall of the Berlin Wall. Because of world-wide economic difficulties, there is every reason to consider that we are entering another decade where defense funds will be sparse and only the most urgent immediate requirements will be funded. This likely will not involve long range and costly weapons programs that only produce equipment for some far-off obscure threat.


75 Comments leave one →
  1. Dave permalink
    July 4, 2017 5:46 pm

    I have read all comments here. Some are interesting and some are just stupid!! The only replacement for the Canadian Surface Combatant is the British Type 26 Frigate for the future of our Navy to replace both the Halifax & Iroquois Class ships. Canada should also strongly consider a SeaLift Capability by acquiring at least 2 (possibly 3) Juan Carlos Class LHD’s as the Austrailian’s have done. It would be a great fit for our Lepoard Tanks and if Canada does acquire the F35, then perhaps a few F35B VTOL for the Air Force would also be a good fit.l

  2. October 14, 2015 4:23 pm

    For me We need a fleet mix of 6 Ivor Huitfeldt
    12 Destoyer Escorts
    09 SSK
    04 AORs
    24 OPV-Corvettes

  3. Glenn permalink
    August 8, 2015 4:02 pm

    Russia is claiming the artic ocean’s sea floor as theirs. What we need is a fleet of deep diving fast attack subs, and serious arctic bases. Perhaps even a 4th army brigade for arctic warfare backed by a beefy airforce and air defence system. I don’t think we have the option of hoping our broke war tired allies would come to our aid.

  4. UKExpat permalink
    July 23, 2015 5:26 pm

    I just happened to see the posts about Canada acquiring an aircraft carrier and was somewhat disturbed to see people advocating the need for one carrier. History and common sense has shown that such an option would not be very wise. The reason being that carriers by their very nature spend a lot time in port carrying out maintenance and being refitted. A ball park figure for this may average out at about 4 months a year, with some years having less time off and others having significantly more. It is reasonable to assume that any enemy would know this and come knocking when the carrier was in refit, France recently suffered this problem with their one carrier when it was required but was not available to combat terrorists in Libya. I believe that the better option is to have two smaller half size carriers instead of one large carrier. That way there should be a carrier available 24/7 with two carriers available together for 1/3 of the time. The flexibility and operational gains are tremendous.

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  6. Alexander permalink
    September 10, 2014 1:24 pm

    Here is an article from last year indicating that some version of the Iver Huitfeldt-class frigate may be in Canada’s future. I think it would be an excellant choice.

  7. Anonymous permalink
    July 22, 2014 5:13 pm

    The problem is that the Canadian Provincial Class DDG/FFG will take up all the money they have for the foreseeable future when it comes to the money situation. That and keeping the Halifax Class running for the next decade. In this for them to get an aircraft carrier they have a plane capable of doing it in the F/A-18 Hornet or if you prefer the CF-188 however that is for a normal class aircraft carrier well over 35,000 tons in this at the current moment they could not pull it off due to the shipyards can only handles ships of a round 9,000 tons. Could they get a second hand carrier would be the next question, and the answer is possible if they wanted to deal with other nations in this either a Queen Elizabeth class would have to be the minimum that they would need. However, when the F-35B which is not the one that they are getting there getting the F-35C and not many of the modern day carriers in the price range of what the Canadians have at the moment. With this the government has to decide do they want to defend the northern frontiers or not. At this current time, the answer is unclear. With all that is going on to the neighbor to the north there is not anything for sure. There military budget for the last three years has been diverted to the C2 [Leopard 2A7C tank], updating the FA 18 to the E model. Then to update their other ships at the minimum of cost. This includes the Kingston Class Patrol ships that they have. Will we see a maple leaf flying over and aircraft carrier in the next decade, NO we will not. The earliest figures state that if they get an aircraft carrier it would be in the 2025-35 time frame and look like the Principe De Asturias class [Spain] and they could only handle that on the west coast port of Esqualmalt. Halifax would have to be modernized to do that with.

  8. permalink
    July 22, 2014 1:42 am

    Brilliant thinking and absolutely the best plan I have ever heard of to date.You should be or maybe are an engineer ? Never the less this plan should be sent to the forces office nearest you and see what they have to say.
    The Arctic is a huge part of Canada and is worth defending and having an Aircrft Carrier Battle Group there full time working with the Royal Canadian Air Force seems logical . Also,Cold Lake,Alta would be a perfect solution for maintaining the aircraft as it is not that far away. This cmmand would have to work with the Canadian Coast Guard to keep the passage open all year but it is being used more and more for frieght and tanker traffic all year long.
    I hope you will take my advice and submit this to the government., Ret.,Col.,Cdn.,Forces.,Ont.,Cdn.

  9. roy permalink
    July 22, 2014 1:18 am

    I say we should get one aircraft carrier and put the whole Canadian Airforce onboard it. Keep it in the north across the arctic and have one heavy destroyer on each coast with frigates as battle groups. Get rid of coastal patrol vessels and have corvettes doing duties of coastal patrols at least they could be used in a fight if properly armed. Every ship bigger then a corvette should have a 5 inch naval gun and put the 57mm pee shooters on the coastal patrol vessels.
    NATO could use the frigates only when needed as they are command and control vessels in aircraft carrier battle groups.
    So here is the list.

    5 heavy destroyers ,one north in the arctic with the carrier switching with one on the coast east or west for servicing.

    12 frigates for coastal battle groups and arctic carrier groups.

    8 corvettes for coastal patrols and destroyer battle groups east and west and arctic as needed.
    1 Aircraft carrier to be stationed in the arctic as a carrier battle group with most air force fighters and planes being able to land and takeoff as a carrier battle group arctic command. working with cold lake,Alta a.f., tanker/supply ship.

    A typical battle group would consist of.
    west and east coast command,,one destroyer,two or three frigates and three corvettes.
    one suppy/tanker ship east and west coast.

    This will keep Canada a safe place for many years to come. JUST DO IT !

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  13. Anonymous permalink
    January 30, 2013 2:02 am

    put anti torpedo device below the water line

  14. Anonymous permalink
    January 30, 2013 2:00 am

    put real cannons on the ships

  15. Alexander permalink
    November 26, 2012 5:37 pm

    I’m hoping that we might see these systems on the new Canadian ships.

    New laser technology out of Germany. This mobile unit can vaporize incoming mortar shells and take out drones. In 3-5 years they expect to have a unit with 10x the power, which could then engage main battle tanks, and anything else on the battlefield, I’m guessing.

    And, the 10x power unit could then also soon replace a point defence system on a ship. It could be choosen in place of a goalkeeper system and would be capable of destroying incoming missles, aircraft and vaporizing incoming naval shells.

  16. Alexander permalink
    October 26, 2012 10:21 am

    …. The purpose of this Letter of Interest (LOI) is to invite private sector firms and industry associations interested in the Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC) Project to:

    a. attend the CSC Industry Engagement Kick-Off Session on Nov. 15, 2012; and/or

    b. submit written responses to Canada’s questions soliciting industry recommendations on the procurement approach which will lead to an implementation contract or contracts for combat ships.

    This LOI is neither a call for Tenders nor a Request for Proposal (RFP). No agreement or contract will be entered into, with any person or entity, based on this LOI. The issuance of this LOI is not to be considered in any way a commitment by the Government of Canada or as authority to potential participants to undertake any work, which could be charged to Canada. This LOI is not to be considered as a commitment to issue an RFP or award contract(s) for this Project.



    The Canada First Defence Strategy (CFDS) states the requirement “to replace Canada’s destroyers and frigates to ensure that the Canadian Forces can continue to monitor and defend Canadian waters and make significant contributions to international naval operations.” The Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC) Project has been created to deliver the combat ships to meet this requirement.

    Canada’s National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS) is the program through which Canada is rebuilding the fleets of the Royal Canadian Navy and Canadian Coast Guard.

    Our intent is that the ships which comprise the CSC will consist of two variants – the first of these being the Area Air Defence and Task Group Command and Control variant and the second being the General Purpose variant.

    Irving Shipbuilding Inc. is the NSPS selected shipyard. Information on the NSPS can be found at:

    A project web site has been created to provide information to industry regarding the CSC PROJECT.

    The address of this web site is:

  17. Alexander permalink
    September 21, 2012 12:56 pm

    If we get the 15 new Destroyers and Frigates, all built on the same hull, all with good air defenses, we should be in pretty good shape. We also have a committment to NATO.

    Keep in mind that between Russia and China, they plan on building up to 16 new carrier battle groups in the next 20 years or so. We had better have a capable navy, otherwise our place in the north could be lost.

  18. September 13, 2012 5:57 pm

    And what about the commitments that Canada has to the other nations, Canada does have some commitments you know. For one it patrols the Greenland-Iceland gap in the Atlantic and also goes into the Med from time to time. That is only in the Atlantic Ocean, in the Pacific they have a joint protection with the USA over the straits of Juan De Fucia, and the Japan & Alaska gap. And corvettes will not do that at all, wind power are you kidding me what a joke. I could just see the US navy seeing that they would laugh there asses off the deck. There is three fuel sources for ships in this time and age nuclear, oil or coal which is it.

    What Canada needs it is getting 16 guided missile destroyers, and a handful of subs slated for 2015 [my bet Trafalgar-class, lol] with this they should be looking into a VTOL carrier in both Atlantic and Pacific Ocean but this would be a dream.

  19. Anonymous permalink
    September 13, 2012 4:18 pm

    I think that we would be better served with a coastal fleet of small corvettes that leave a small signature in the water. Has anyone looked at sails again,I would support research into alternative motive power.

  20. Alexander permalink
    June 23, 2012 2:45 pm

    I unfortunately may have to withdraw my support for Harper, and if I do many others will also, as I was fairly strongly supportive.

    However, I now know that we are going to build the new Destroyers in the most stupid manner possible, making them cost much more than they should. It’s going to be just like the Halifax Class, where we paid through the nose.

    This combined with the new mortgage rules, which may hurt the realestate market in Canada, just when it’s the last thing we need. And the complete disregard for the environment, means that it may be time to throw this guy under the bus.

    It’s now becoming an issue of how much damage will he do before the next election.

  21. Alexander permalink
    June 21, 2012 11:13 am

    OTTAWA — Canada’s navy will have to do more with less in a few years as internal documents and Defence Department insiders have confirmed the country’s aging fleet of destroyers will be retired before replacements are ready.

    The revelation highlights the pressure the Conservative government and Canadian Forces are under as they race against the clock to start cutting steel on new vessels through their promised $35 billion national shipbuilding procurement strategy.

    “It just kind of echoes the same worries that we’ve had,” said Andrew Warden, head of maritime affairs at the Navy League of Canada. “These projects keep being delayed and delayed, and the ships just keep getting older and older.”

    The navy’s Iroquois-class destroyers were built in the early 1970s and underwent a major upgrade in the 1990s so they could provide anti-submarine warfare, anti-aircraft defence as well as command-and-control capabilities for Canadian and allied naval task forces.

    Over the decades, the destroyers have participated in missions off Canada’s shores and around the world, including in the Persian Gulf in support of Operation Desert Storm, the Indian Ocean after 9/11 and in Haiti following the January 2010 earthquake.

    Briefing notes prepared for Associate Defence Minister Julian Fantino in May 2011 and obtained by Postmedia News state the destroyers “will reach the end of their planned service life beginning in 2017, at which point they will be over 43 years old.”

    Yet the notes also say the Iroquois-class “will not be replaced before it is retired,” an assessment that was confirmed Wednesday by a senior official within National Defence.

    The navy is putting in place plans to ensure the loss of the destroyers won’t negatively impact the maritime force’s capabilities, and Warden said Canada’s 12 Halifax-class frigates can take on many of the tasks currently assigned to the destroyers.

    However, the loss of the Iroquois-class “will definitely limit some of our options” in terms of what type of operations the navy can undertake during that period, Warden said, while the key question is exactly how long the gap will last.

    Treasury Board, which holds the federal purse strings, reportedly agreed on Tuesday to release several hundred million dollars so the Defence Department could move ahead and begin designing the vessels that will replace the destroyers and frigates.

    This is considered a significant step and the hope is that negotiations with Irving Shipyard in Halifax and associated contractors responsible for building the next generation of naval surface combatants will be finished by 2016, with the first ship delivered in the early 2020s.

    But Fantino’s briefing notes warned that the “critical” $26.6-billion Canadian-surface-combatant (CSC) project to replace the destroyers as well as the frigates would need to enter the design phase in 2011 to ensure the rest of the process — including contract negotiations with industry — moved ahead smoothly.

    On top of that, senior naval officers noted at a recent conference there were more than 400 people working directly on the Halifax-class frigate program in the 1980s and another 1,000 contributing in other ways.

    In contrast, there are about 30 currently assigned to the project that will replace the frigates and Iroquois-class destroyers, with that number expected to peak at only a couple hundred in the coming years.

    “There needs to be an understanding across this community about the relative fragility of the staff capacity that we are seeing,” deputy naval commander Rear-Admiral Mark Norman said at the time. “This is not anyone’s fault. It’s just a reality.”

  22. Alexander permalink
    June 9, 2012 12:28 pm

    Under the new plan we are getting 15 new destroyers/frigates (5000-6000 tons each), 6-8 Artic Patrol Vessel, 2-3 Replenishment ships, and 12 littoral patrol vessels. This is providing that the Harper Government stays in power.

  23. Anonymous permalink
    June 6, 2012 12:13 pm

    The navy should have a single platform that provides a “mother ship” sensor capability? What if that one platform id unavailable to sail? Does the navy stay in port? “Sorry we can’t play, out radar vessel has engine problems. Don’t worry though we can play again in six months.”
    Or out source the sensors to the Air Force? And hope the weather allows for flights, or that the ships is within range of a shore based facility or that the aircraft has a sufficient loiter time?

    None of those solutions are practical nor practicable. A modern warships needs its own organic sensors and weapons. You suggest that the Frigate remove its gun system so that it can save weigh. What then does it use for warning shots across the bow of a large vessel. I mean sure a .50 cal will scare a dingy, but not so much the 500,000 ton container ships or oil transports plying the seas.


    A replacement needs to be considered for several reasons. One, the frigates will already be past their half-lives once retro-fitted as is, and everyone’s argument (including yours) for new ships is that a 40 year old ship isn’t the best thing to send to war. Given that the design to build time for a major combatant is 10+ years we need to start with a replacement NOW, rather than wait for the ships to be 35+ and look at it. So if we are to replace them, then don’t worry about any other upgrades. If they are replaced 10 years after FLEX then we will have used the Halifax class for 30+ years, more than long enough.

    Two, to make the Halifax class capable for the modern naval battlefield would require too much time and money, and potentially sacrifices of capability, that cannot be afforded. The loss of a gun to offset new radars, loss of a hanger to reduce weight for new fuel efficient engines. The changing from Mk-48 to a MK-41 VLS, or some other system would be enormous and require new training. Do the ships go into refit to be re-skinned (ie covered in radar absorbent material)? Do we then have to change the positions of the sensors for best coverage? What types of missiles, guns, SRBOC launchers, etc., would be compatible with the new radars, and sensors. And so on and so on.

    No an old ship is too costly to improve for the limited life span that remains. It would take 3-7 years to determined what needed to be done on a SECOND upgrade and then tender a contract, find a supplier and ship yard, and then would take another 3-4 years to upgrade the fleet. 10 years AFTER the FLEX we end up with 35+ year old ships that have SOME of the capability a new class would have, at the SAME cost.

    Your fleet structure is also flawed. With neither the budget nor the man power, the navy can only afford to have 2 real classes of surface combatants. And based upon the operational schedule ALL governments have placed on the navy, 4-6 major surface combatants just will not be sufficient to cover all the tasks provided to the RCN. The first class of large surface combatants needs to be a class of between 15-18 ships, at 4-5000 tons, and a crew of 180-200 (including an air det). This level of manning actually frees up crew for other ships. Given that the Reserves also provide trained, sea going members (about 1800 at any given time), there becomes sufficient personnel for the second class of vessels. This class needs to be a class of littoral optimized vessels of between 1500-200 tons and a crew of no more than 75 (60 would be ideal) This keeps the navy’s crew requirements to a reasonable level AND increases the available platforms to a level where the navy can accomplish all the missions sent its way. 4 tankers and 6 Arctic patrol ships would round out a capable, modern fleet for Canada

    Of course doing this would require a Naval CDS and a government that has the willpower to reinvest in Canadian ship-building on an unprecedented scale.

    Finding both will be the challenge.

  24. Alexander permalink
    March 26, 2012 4:59 pm

    This is an update regarding the new Canadian Supply Ships.

    March 8-12/12: JSS Plan #3. Canada has moved forward with a new JSS approach, awarding relatively small design contracts for a custom JSS design from BMT, and a modified off-the-shelf Berlin Class design. Canada intends to pick a winner, and then license the design for construction in Canada.

    BMT Fleet, who designed Britain’s new 37,000t MARS fleet tankers and supply ships, is awarded a 12-month, C$ 9.8 million design project to further develop their Contract Design as a JSS option. They have already done a JSS Preliminary Design under earlier contracts, and have been supporting the JSS project since December 2002 through a series of individual taskings issued under an Engineering, Logistics, and Management Support (ELMS) Services Contract. These have included a broad range of engineering and design studies.

    At the same time, ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems has won an undisclosed contract to modify their Berlin Class Task Group Supply Vessel (EGV) to meet Canadian requirements. The modified design will be developed by ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems Canada (TKMSC) and TKMS subsidiary Blohm + Voss Naval. If the modified Berlin Class EGV design is chosen, it would be followed by a functional design contract, and those designs would be licensed for construction by a Canadian shipyard. This design contract includes initial provisions for a licensing agreement to that effect. Blohm + Voss | BMT Fleet.

  25. Alexander permalink
    February 22, 2012 2:01 pm

    Here is some video from HMCS Victoria, one of Canada’s subs.

  26. Alexander permalink
    February 8, 2012 6:40 pm

    Here is some information on the RN Type 26 Frigate.

  27. Alexander permalink
    February 6, 2012 1:53 pm

    If anyone can find a way to access this please post the design here. (Note, this is DIN-DND intrAnet).

  28. Alexander permalink
    February 4, 2012 3:23 pm

    It actually states 5500-6000 tons, and 6000 tons is what I expect to see. I will be furious if we go with the Nansen unless the number of VLS cells is increased from 8 to at least 32. Also, the Nansen has the Aegis system which we won’t be using.

    I’m going to be nervous until I see the Canadian hull design. When we built the Halifax Class we paid double the going rate for a frigate at that time. The cost per ship was over 700 million and some of these new frigates and destroyers being built in europe today are coming in at that cost. An expensive hull design does nothing, in terms of exports to other countries, at a time when budgets are so tight.

    And, the weapon systems are already established, so you simply decide to use the Aegis system, or the Smart-L/APAR combination, then decide to either use the American or the new European missle systems. Then pick your sonar, ASW package and ship defensive systems and that’s about it.

    So, for Canada to build a super expensive hull design simply to say we did it ourselves is the act of a stupid government. To compete for defense dollars internationally today, one must find ways to do things in the most economically sound manner, while still delivering a quality product. This is not what I expect will occur. I would much rather we license an existing hull then make the necessary modifications for our needs and build it for a reasonable price.

    If it were up to me, we would use the De Zeven Provincien design, increase the cruising range, and give it more of the stealthy look of the FREMM.

  29. February 3, 2012 11:36 pm

    Suggestion look up SCSCP for Canada, it is mighty interesting a 5,500 ton hull which does put it in the DZP class hold, or will they go with the Nansen hull like RAN only time will tell the only thing I can see that would have to be upgraded between the DD to FF is the gun at 57mm for a frigate I can see, but for a destroyer come on. Need something a little more like a 76, 100, 127 or 155mm gun in the A position.

  30. Anonymous permalink
    February 3, 2012 11:35 pm

    CVE – for the army – Crew Vision Enhancement for armored vehicles.

  31. February 3, 2012 11:28 pm

    My bad, according to my information which is as current as you can make it. It seems that they are getting the C3 from Thales installed during the Halifax upgrades and they are scheduled to have it in there frigates and destroyers in the future. Though looking though the website of Thales. Canada has a project name called CVE, does anyone get what that is pointing to. Carrier Escort anyone.

  32. Alexander permalink
    February 3, 2012 1:41 pm

    Kory, you absolutely do not know what your talking about! The De Zeven Provincien does use the radar systems that Canada will be using, we are a partner in the APAR system, of which you are clearly unaware. Our ships will be using the Smart-L/APAR combination with the MK41 VLS missle system, just like the De Zeven Provincien. This will mean detection of balistic missles at ranges of up to 2000km with the ability to intercept those missles with the SM3 missle, which has a range of hundreds of miles and an altitude ceiling of 100 miles.

  33. February 3, 2012 12:32 pm

    The tribal class is over 40 years old right now, I did not say you get anymore than two to cover the gaps that they have and that for only five years until the Provincials are up and running. You see a navy that is looking at a new destroyer. Might look to be weak and have no voice the only good thing is that Russia is in the same boat as Canada right now, and therefore Canada’s primary concern Arctic security needs to be a concern. Now I know that my suggestion was not a popular one, however there are many nations they could go to for something like that. The type 45 destroyer has the usual weapons that Canada needs, however if it wants a Tomahawk capability then it would not be that hard to put one on there. Your De Zeven Provincien suggestion has one major flaw in it, and that is that Canada does not use the radar packages that they use in it. For this they would for ease of use would have to go to the USA or UK. Due to that they are also unaccustomed to the 127mm gun on it as well. Though I have a feeling that they are going to take a page out of the Australia book, and a version of the Hobart could be the one that they are going for. That and the capability of the Canberra class would work nicely for Canada.

  34. Alexander permalink
    February 3, 2012 11:53 am

    The Spruance Class is an absolutely ridiculous suggestion, we don’t need any stop gap ships, nor is there any possibility that this is going to happen. Nor am I a big fan of the Type 45 destroyer, as Canada will definitely end up with balistic missle defence capable destroyers which the Type 45 is not.

    I simply like the look of the italian FREMM version, which is pretty much identical in size to the De Zeven Provincien, which has the right radars and weapon systems. So if we could give the Provincien that same stealthy styling it would look very cool, although a Canadian design is now what I am expecting.

  35. February 3, 2012 12:18 am

    Look the FREMM is not the one that RCN should be looking at, but its frame FREDA for the armaments. However there is something that they should do and that is look into for a short-term destroyer stop-gap until they get there DD built and a Spruance Class for this would be ideal. Okay, the other thing is that if they are going to start building I would suggest how MEKO, and the RN have done their ships and getting 6 Type 45’s out in less than 5 years.

  36. Alexander permalink
    February 2, 2012 1:58 pm

    That is, work on some of the ships will start in 2013, not 3013. lol

  37. Alexander permalink
    February 1, 2012 11:09 pm

    If anyone here can access DND INTRANET, or has a source who can, tell me and I will post a link, as long as you post the design here.

  38. Alexander permalink
    February 1, 2012 10:17 pm

    Love the look of the new FREMM frigate that was launched late last year. Has all the wrong weapons and radars for Canada, but would be great if it could be redesigned for us.

    However, I am now expecting a Canadian design, read something about it on a military website, gave a link to a preliminary design, but I cannot access it because it is DND INTRANET. Canada does not have a design team anymore, not since the Halifax Class was completed, however the power of modern design computers and programs seems to make that less of a problem. There is a team, of some sort, at work, likely using powerful computers to put together an all Canadian design. They will start work on some of the ships in 3013 but the destroyers and frigates will come a bit later meaning they have some time to complete the designs.

    Now, it is still possible that Canada with license an existing design to be built in Canada, but a Canadian design is now a very real possibility.

  39. Alexander permalink
    December 3, 2011 8:01 pm

    They might just announce using the mk57, who knows, but the strike size version of the MK41 can handle any missile, including the SM3. And you get 4 ESSM missiles per cell with either system.

    I don’t know what it is with the RCN and the 57mm autocannon, but we are in love with the system, especially the MKIII. Apparently, the latest version (MKIII) can be used for missile defence, as it can take out an incoming anti-ship missile, at least this is the claim. I would much prefer a 5″ gun and let other systems deal with the incoming missles.

    The gun doesn’t really do that much, in terms of dealing with other major threats, it is the missiles that will deal with other ships and can also be used against land targets. So, I think that our people think the 57mm is a better choice for in close defence against small surface targets, aircraft and missiles. The real advantage of the 5″ gun is having the new shell that allows bombartment at a range of 60 miles, that is a capability that I think can be a major asset in certain situations.

    If using the 57mm means they have to call them all frigates, then fine. As long as they are all equiped with the most advanced Smart-L & APAR radar, meaning they can all control a huge area, as the Smart-L can see 480km to 1000km in all directions, depending which report we believe. And, they can see stealth aircraft at over 200km. Then, if they all have at least a 48 cells launcher, and are modular design, so they can be upgraded with the latest ASW suites, then we will have an excellant Surface Combatant.

  40. December 3, 2011 5:39 pm

    Now I have a question why the Mk.41 why not the Mk. 57 that can fire any missile up to SM-6, and all the surface missiles that a Ticonderoga can carry. The problem is that if there destroyers have the 57mm gun then they cannot be considered destroyers at all since in a minimum requirement to be considered a destroyer in the modern era is a 76mm but their are few of those and they are from the cold war. Maybe Canada will put a 100mm and be like the French, or are they going to mount the 127mm or the 155mm like there main allies in UK and USA. A 57mm gun is typical on a frigate, look at the Independence Class Frigate, or the Freedom class Frigate.
    With the F-35A being acquired does this means that a small carrier is not out of the question, but for the RCN needs is an amphibious capability as well and in this does anyone smell an America Class Assault Carrier on the future of the RCN, or are they going to go with a helicopter destroyer like the Japanese in a CVE type role.
    The submarine problem has been solved with the upgrades to the subs they have, but they also need an attack sub capability as well remember unlike most nations they should have a three ocean navy. The USA can help only so much. The question is will they get more than the six submarines that they are using.

    With the RCN and RN upgrading I got a question for you, when in the hell is the USN going to get the hint that we also need to upgrade in certain departments as well. With this our frigates have reached the end of the life of a frigate, our destroyers problem is being compounded with the Arliegh Burke [Flight 3 and 3B] being built when we should be building Zumwalts, or a newer design. Our president is an idiot for cutting defense this far to the bone, maybe someone should tell him that even a fellow democrat FDR expanded the military when he had to and now we have to update and expand ourselves.

  41. Alexander permalink
    November 30, 2011 10:39 pm

    This is an article about the improvements made to the range of the Smart-L system for the detection and tracking of ballistic missles.

  42. Alexander permalink
    November 30, 2011 2:44 pm

    Here is the information on the Smart-L/APAR combination working with the SM-3 missle.

    Sept 13/11: Raytheon announces successful testing for their prototype dual-band datalink, allowing ships that use either Lockheed Martin SPY-1/ AEGIS or Thales Nederland’s SMART-L and/or APAR radars to employ the full range of Standard Missiles, including the SM-3.

    The firm cites up to 20 eligible ships, including SPY-1/ AEGIS/ MK41 VLS operators in Norway (Fridtjof Nansen) and Spain (F100); as well as APAR/ SMART-L/ MK41 radar operators in Denmark (Iver Huitfeldt), Germany (F124 Sachsen), the Netherlands (De Zeven Provincien); and closely derived S1850 operators in France (Horizon), Italy (Horizon) and the United Kingdom (Type 45).

  43. Alexander permalink
    November 29, 2011 8:53 pm

    Here is a link to the APAR system information.

    Click to access apar.pdf

  44. Alexander permalink
    November 29, 2011 8:19 pm

    We are buying the F-35A, already announced. The Destroyers will have the Smart-L/APAR systems, as Canada ia a partner in the APAR system. The SMART-L is being modified so it can be used with the SM-3 missle.

  45. November 28, 2011 2:23 pm

    With all that has been said in this post we got to remember two things, Canada is dependent on US materials at this time, however they have ties to the UK. The other thing that we got to remember is that the government in Canada tends to do one thing when one party is in power, and tends to do another thing when another is in power. The Canadian government is stable, but when it comes to there military the term I have heard is unpredictable. Now we have that the RCN is getting fifteen ships which I think will resemble either a Type 45 or Hobart class for there destroyer, and the a MEKO design frigate. We also got to look on another thing as well that in the future that Canada will be getting F-35 fighters now we do not know which of the versions that they will be getting so it could be that they are getting a small carrier or that they will be placed near the Arctic so that they can have rapid response at this time to take care of there needs of defending there resources.

    We are also looking at a new doctrine for the RCN as well, instead of looking of a mostly defensive force that the RCN will need to have an offensive potential more than an armed man in a row boat. With this they can augment the forces that they are usually with like US, UK, or any NATO fleet that is made for any type of operation. Right now in this time they will need something bigger than there standard 57mm gun on there ships, they will either need to go with the standard 127mm that they can get from the decommissioning of the Spruance and Ticonderoga Classes, or they can make their own. And with the new standard of destroyers going up to the 155mm cannon will Canada follow suit? Who knows?

  46. Alexander permalink
    November 26, 2011 6:50 pm

    I think the Danish Iver Huitfelt class is ideal for the RCN. The size, the modularity, propulsion, crew size, weapon/sensor options are what the RCN needs to replace both our DDs and FFs in one hull.


    Yes, I agree, and we could see a license to build this class, or something similar in Canada. All of the ships will be built on the same hull, at least that is the plan. I expect more than 4 destoyers, with not that much difference between the destoyers and frigates, all being armed with the Smart-L/APAR systems, and the MK41 launcher.

  47. Anonymous permalink
    November 13, 2011 1:07 pm

    Canada’s New Navy. I agree with some of the comments I’ve read by Canadian Fisher and Kory. One thing we can all agree on is that the Minister of Finance dictates how many ships we can get. It’s nice to see that the current government seems to appreciate that we need to keep up with global re-armament but should a successive, other-party come into power down the road, what shipbuilding programs will they dismantle or reduce to save money and look good?
    Here are my opinions:
    1. Destroyer & Frigates. I believe we need 4 DDs and 12 FFs. This gives us a credible naval force for each coast and one that we seem to be able to afford and crew. How can a new DD/FF cost $1.7m US in Canada, which can be built in Denmark or Netherlands for one fifth the price? Why do we need a new, not like any other DD/FF design in the world, so we have to go thru years of design/trials etc. to finally put them in the water with the same technology as those 10 years ago? I think the Danish Iver Huitfelt class is ideal for the RCN. The size, the modularity, propulsion, crew size, weapon/sensor options are what the RCN needs to replace both our DDs and FFs in one hull. Yes, the first four should be the DD version, since the Halifax class are now undergoing their FELEX. Then, later, when the time is right to start replacing the HFX class, lessons learned from the DD hulls can be incorporated into the FF replacements.
    2. Submarines. With the monumental shipbuilding programs announced, there will be no new subs for the RCN. Thus, we make the Victorias work, and get our money out of them. These subs are still valuable assets to training in peacetime and being our silent vigil in the chokepoints of our coastline. The “enemy” who wishes to enter our Arctic and/or coastal inlet waters will be heard, identified, tracked, reported, and if need be, engaged. After the current shipbuilding program, AIP submarines will probably exceed the technology of today and would be a good buy for sub replacements.
    3. Arctic. I agree that Canada should focus heavily on becoming an “arctic expert”. Other countries have ballistic missile defence priorities, or have large/small aircraft carriers, or are investing in SSBNs. We cannot be leaders in these categories, but we can be in the Arctic. Let’s hope we get the 8 A/Ops ships, and maybe another full size icebreaker of the John Diefenbaker class. There’s not much we can do to an intrusive foreign SSN which is under the ice, other than try to track it and possibly intercept it when it decides to flee. Thus, good satelite coverage, and long range, unmanned aerial reconnaissance vehicles with sophisticated sensors are necessary.
    Ken. End of transmission.

  48. Alexander permalink
    October 19, 2011 7:06 pm

    Also, the Halifax Class upgrades are already under way, under a completely seperate budget, at least one ship has already been completed. The budget for this new build has absolutely nothing to do with the upgrades to the Halifax Class.

  49. Alexander permalink
    October 19, 2011 6:51 pm

    Ya, whatever.

    Anyway, they have announced the winning shipyards for the rebuild.

  50. October 19, 2011 4:02 pm

    Look in order to compete for the resources to the north, a basic diesel sub will not do. They need a nuke if they are going to go toe to toe with them. Right now, the destroyer program building should be curtailed to four. For one the current naval size will not allow for anything bigger. Maybe in the years to come, but fifteen destroyers would make Canada the tenth biggest navy in the world and due to the economic situation. They need to shore up there auxiliary ships before even making an inroads into destroyers. Now I can see the upgrades to the 12 City Class frigates [Halifax], and the 12 patrol boats [Glace] and with this that 20 billion dollars for 12 ships is nearly stupid. Okay when I said four it was not due to that I do not trust the Canadian ship builders it was due to the size of the navy right now a one for one on the destroyer class is about all they can do. I can see them building a modified Halifax class of six ships so that they would have the eighteen that was planned in the first place.

    Provincial Class Destroyer, should be split up evenly between the three oceans that they need to defend. Right now the current thinking of the Canadian Navy is that they maintain the presence in the north with a couple of submarines. Right now, they are redesigning the class since it was brought up in the 1990’s to begin with. Now with the replacement of the Halifax Batch 1, and the Tribal class replacements. This is what a friend that is in the RCN said that they were looking at.

    4 AOR ships
    8 Province Class Destroyers
    12 Halifax Class Frigates [old], building Batch 3 Halifax’s [6]
    Designing a replacement class for Batch 1 Halifax
    Looking into a nuclear submarine like the Los Angeles Class, or Akula Class
    2 new oilers, and 4 LCV’s which could be used as a carrier in an emergency [Juan Carlos Class]

    This is where the 15 new builds come from 4 AOR, 8 Province, and 2 oilers and 1 LCV in the next decade. The rest is a dream.

  51. Alexander permalink
    October 19, 2011 12:42 pm

    I’m not convinced we will need nuke subs, but will need some of the new AIP subs that can operate for weeks at a time submerged. I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop and the Canadian government announce new subs from Germany, we likely need 8-12.

  52. October 18, 2011 10:05 pm

    Distiller is correct.. Don’t expect either China or Russia to respect Canada’s claim to sovereignty over the north once the riches open up….. particularly since not even our allies the Americans do…… This is a make or break moment for Canada and frankly, unless we have nuke powered subs for the arctic, we will be contracting out to either the US or UK anyway.

    Ships have a cost, leadership….. that’s priceless

  53. Alexander permalink
    August 24, 2011 11:46 pm

    Well, it isn’t up to you to decide how many Destroyers we can have. LOL

    We ARE getting 15 ships, at this point the information we have is that they will be Destoyers with a budget set at 20 billion dollars. The original request from the military was 12 Provincial Class Destroyers for 20 billions dollars, or approximately 1.7 billion dollars each, to which the government answered with 15 ships at approximately 1.3 billion dollars each. We have very little information, but a Canadian Admiral was interviewed who stated that a team has been working on this for about 5 years now.

    The Spanish (F-100 Class) and the Netherlands have both built destoyers for under 700 million dollars. I believe both were built as frigates but are classed as destroyers by NATO. We should be able to build the ships for the 1.3 billion but I am anxiously awaiting details. We absolutely can support 15 Detroyers and one of the primary purposes of this project is to rebuild our shipbuilding industry.

    I am expecting 15 ships all equipped with the Smart-L & APAR systems and hopefully 48 cell vls launchers, beyond that if some are built as Frigates and others as Detroyers, I don’t care as long as the capabilities are outstanding. They should all be capable of deploying the SM3 missile which will at some point work with the smart-l system.

  54. August 24, 2011 7:26 pm

    Hi, I have been revisiting the Canadian problem I suggested that at best they would need 3 destroyers of the type 42 or 45 design. And as I said they need a new destroyer, and not fifteen since the navy could not support 15 DDG’s at best they could do 4 like they have been doing. And at the moment the shipbuilding industry in Canada is not doing so well, in this I am going to do something that I would not normally do, and that is to suggest that the RCN look at another design. Like the Murasame class from Japan, or the MEKO 360 from Germany, and they should look into expanding their frigate fleet over the next 20 years with two classes like the FREDA and FREEM ships. Submarines I would look into the Scorpene class or see if they could lease some Akula’s

  55. Alexander permalink
    August 23, 2011 1:20 pm

    Regarding the Aegis system, does anyone know how many targets each fire control channel can handle at one time??

  56. Alexander permalink
    August 15, 2011 9:33 pm

    When it comes to warship design, the radar systems and Mk 41 VLS missle system is not part of any modular system, so these would be common to any design. Beyond this, if a frigate or destroyer can carry say half a dozen or so mission modules then they have some flexibility and the modules aren’t all that big. We currently have 12 frigates and 3 destroyers, so we are replacing one for one, 15 for 15, yet the crew requirements of the new ships will be considerably less than the current ships.

    Also, the new ships have to be capable of pretty much any mission, as they may be needed for the defence of North America or the next war abroard. I’m all for the 15 Destroyer approach, as those 15 ships are going to carry the load for Canada, where naval defense is concerned.

  57. Alexander permalink
    August 15, 2011 8:52 pm

    From what I have read they are very much thinking about modular design, using the mission modules.

  58. Canadian Fisher permalink
    August 15, 2011 3:54 pm

    The Swedish have an AIP proposal that would allow new subs as well as the Victoria class to operate in the Arctic. A subsequent other use for the money put aside for all of these grand plans of the navy would be to limit the blue water navy for more reasonable coastal and intermediate range ships and subs. Do we need 15 AAW destroyers or would 4 be more reasonable with a number of more well rounded frigates (10 or 12) that will be capable of other missions i.e. Absalon (Denmark). Build the ice strengthened patrol vessels and get a presence in the Arctic, expand on there capabilities after the hull and machinery has been purchased.

    Make the design modular that you could add weapon systems or surveillance systems according to the need. This cuts down on cost and the ability to grow and figure out what will work and what their missions will be. Build the OPV’s either the PV85 or some Knud Rassmussen (Denmark) class that can fill the need then subs that can operate below the ice can be added when time and money are available. The Knud class is around $50 million each without armament or advanced sonar or radar, get the hulls in the water and we can expand on the capability later.

    There seems to be some sentiment for a amphibious fleet for troop movement – Canadian High Command always wants the biggest and the best irregardless of the personnel manning issues and cost. The Foudre class has two ships that would meet the basic needs at what will be a reasonable cost – or better yet why not a ship that is a little smaller. The Endurance class LPD of Singapore is smaller only needs 65 sailors, costs $200 M buy three or four and they can move a Canadian Battle Group. When not in use they have the ability as Command vessels for Arctic patrol, Patrol vessel resupply, humanitarian aid etc. they have the interior space for these modules at reasonable costs. This will also take that pressure of the planned AO replacements so that these duties do not fall to them anymore.

    The last thing is the AOR – why do we need more than one large replenishment ship – build one Berlin class or Patino class and then have 2 or 3 smaller but capable ships at half the cost for example the Wave class (UK) or the Endurance (NZ), for any of the peacetime cruises they would require a smaller crew and be more economical to build and operate. The will move enough fuel and goods for a 3 ship task group on just about any mission and will save on the larger AO’s having to do the smaller jobs.

    There is a lot to be said about modular systems and equipment that is the same so that logistics and supplier are a lot easier. The Canadian Navy and Government have to get their heads around what is needed not what they want – they are not a force projection navy. We could be a leader in patrols to the Arctic, have a larger Great Lakes presence as well as more time on both coasts.

  59. Alexander permalink
    August 7, 2011 12:22 pm

    Our Government has just recently announced a new 30 year, 35 billion dollar ship building program mainly for the military. There is 20 billion dollars for 15 new wide area, anti-ballistic missle, capable destroyers which will be build in Canada, so about 1.3 billion each, which can be done. We will likely license an existing design to be built in Canada. We are also getting new ice breakers, supply ships, coastal patrol vessels, and some new coast guard ships. The bids to select two canadian shipyards are already in and the two yards will be announced later this year, they will begin cutting steel in about 2 years. Other than subs, this will completely rebuild our existing navy.

  60. Kory McDonald permalink
    August 4, 2011 3:10 am

    It’s true the canadians need a new destroyer, but with the economy as it is [look back at Canada fleet segment] I suggested that if they get a destroyer that it should be a type 42 or 45 from England. And they can use a bunch of frigates to pick up the slack of the missing destroyers since I only suggested three for them at best, and two at worst. Now with this being done the Canadian Navy will probably never see an Aircraft Carrier, or a destroyer again due to their messed up government that is willing to spend on social programs and not for the defense of their own nation.

  61. Alexander permalink
    May 22, 2011 2:40 pm

    The high cost of building in Canada should be the end of that option. We paid huge money for the Halifax Class and it wasn’t worth the over 700M per ship at the time, we can buy much more capable ships for that price right now. A friend of mine used to be an oficer on one of the Halifax Class and I had an amazing tour, say pretty much everything. They were high quality ships when they were built, but the premium we paid as tax payers was just too much.

    I would much rather us license the F-100 Class, like Australia is doing, but build them somewhere we can get better quality than Spain, as I’ve heard the quality control of their ships wasn’t great. We also need to clean up the exterior of the ship, like Autralia is doing, to make them a little more stealthy. So we could make a few modifications, increase the range, etc, and end up with a pretty capable new Detroyers for say around 800M each. Then we end up with Aegis Class ships, with anti-ballistic missle capabilities, at a reasonable price.

    Then also build the JSS ships elsewhere, but build the Artic Patrol Ships, the new Coast Guard Cutters and the new Coastal Patrol Boats in Canada, if the price is at least somewhat reasonable. Then we at least acheive some kind of a balance and it doesn’t cost tax payers too much more than it should, as the overpayment on the smaller vessels sholdn’t be quite as bad, hopefully. And yes we also need some of the new diesel subs, with the ability to stay submerged for up to 6 weeks at a time, as they can operate up north.

    For those of you who don’t know, between them, the Russians and the Chinese plan on building between 10 and 16 new carrier battle groups over the next 10-20 years. If we just sit around and wait until we are completely outgunned we are just asking for what will come next.

  62. Ken permalink
    October 31, 2010 10:43 am

    Yes, we need a Navy. No, we don’t need a small, unit-expensive, fleet. History has shown that in war and peacetime, numbers count, so that more areas may be patrolled/monitored/guarded etc. Yes, we need to continuously upgrade/replace our fleet units so that we don’t enter a conflict with a club vs a missile. We have the capability to build all our own weapons of war in Canada. However, due to the political interference and footdragging, then the ridiculous amount of time taken from concept to contract awarding, and the outrageous unit costs desired by Canadian manufacturers (as oppossed to other nations), the years spent doing all this ends in failure to build anything or something less than the military needs. Why can’t we build our future surface combatant on say, the Danish Ivar Huitfelt class hull and just select the kit (weapons/sensors/propulsion) to meet Canadian needs. If Canadian shipyards cannot build them at a reasonable price, which would provide jobs in Canada, then we go to Denmark for a contract. No, we don’t need Arleigh Burkes, or Horizons. We don’t have and never will have carrier battle groups. But we may sail with those of our allies, and so like the Halifax class, we can still contribute a modern asset. We also need the A/OPs asap. What’s the hold up? With all the northern nations excitement about the Arctic and North West Passage, everyone is preparing for future ops up there, but Canada. Will we be again caught with our pants down and have to suddenly buy some less than ideal type of arctic patrol vessel to thrust into this region when we find strangers in our northern backyard? Build them now, put them up there, then you we can say ‘this is our passage’. And arm these vessels,and I don’t mean with a CIWS. Sending a cop on a beat without a gun makes no sense. You just can’t announce to the world that we have an invisible fence around around Canada and nobody is allowed to cross it. If they know through intel you have no defence of it, and see no armed presence, then they will go in and we will take a month to send ‘something’ to the area while berating them in the House of Commons. The JSS is just another failed dream. We will let the Protecteur class be decommissioned with no replacement, just watch. I can only hope that our government will acquire us a modern, credible surface combatant before the Iroquois class rust out. One just has to sing our National Anthem to ask ourselves if the words are true. End of transmission.

  63. Jed permalink
    March 21, 2010 11:00 am

    Warships are no good for the high arctic – subs however can beetle about beneath the ice all year long, as long as they are nukes.

    While I agree that my adopted home needs to recapitalize its surface fleet, it also needs to invest in MPA and other air assets – go to the CASR site to find lots of common sense articles offering “modest proposals” for improving things.

    I would also like to see some investment in hovercraft. For crossing winter ice floes they cannot be beat. They can deploy Rangers (Canada’s part time soldiers who are arctic specialists, many of them being Inuit), or be used as patrol craft. Probably a bit of a leap to fit them with missiles, but no reason why it could not be done eh !

  64. March 21, 2010 8:43 am

    Yes I should have emphasised or directly mentioned China’s activities in the far north. When commenting here I sort of hammer away, forget half of what I wanted to mention, and then spot the typo’s once I have submitted!!!!!!!!!!!

    It is interesting to speculate that in the late 21st century and 22nd century if maps will place the Arctic at the centre of the world. In a way that is more logical as it the nexus between Europe, North America, Russia/China. Especially as the Middle Eastern oil runs out we stop being centred on Suez as a shipping route. Of course this will put India and Australia on the periphery. Sorry, I find maps interesting.

  65. Distiller permalink
    March 21, 2010 7:13 am

    China these days is *by far* the most active nation in the Arctic. They have strategic resources and shipping interests (in case the ice cover up north vanishes), and have already stated their plans to claim their share of whatever there is.

    Russia is also a factor, but I’d say Russia might actually be – up to a certain level – an ally against Chinese ambitions.

    On the timeframe: Looking at how long it takes to get a new ship from zero to FOC, and how long they tend to stay in service, the time is NOW, not when Chinese subs and icebreakers roam the North.

  66. Mike Burleson permalink*
    March 20, 2010 7:47 pm

    “You should remember the Chinese now have the world’s largest ship builders.”

    So how does vanishing shipyards, ships forced to serve 40 years, and shrinking force structures prepare us for the future? I always wondered about that.

    So if China can expand her fleet, so can the West.

  67. March 20, 2010 4:43 pm

    “This sort of reasoning confuses me. ”

    Democracies move slower than totalitarian regimes, once the Chinese start to build it could be too late. Evidence would suggest that in acquiring resources the Chinese are quite ferocious. Shades of 1930’s Europe I think. ;)

    Further the Russians have already started making claims (both implied and explicit) to vast tracts of the Arctic. (The Canadians are in dispute with the Americans too.)

    You are right threats to come out of the vacuum. But the threats are already on the horizon.

    You should remember the Chinese now have the world’s largest ship builders. (Even if they lag behind in some of the more advanced techniques. )

  68. papa legba permalink
    March 20, 2010 2:52 pm

    Distiller said: “In 15 years Canada will find China and Russia at its Arctic doorstep (plus the Europeans). It will be a high-threat environment.”

    This sort of reasoning confuses me. Why would Canada need forces immediately to react to a Chinese threat that would take a minimum of a decade to build up? High-threat environments do not materialize out of nowhere. Future opponents take as much time to build up their forces as future friends. Canada does not have to build today to protect against a Chinese arctic task force, because that force does not yet exist. The threat can be safely ignored until China starts building icebreakers and performing military exercises in the far North Pacific.

  69. Distiller permalink
    March 20, 2010 9:33 am

    In 15 years Canada will find China and Russia at its Arctic doorstep (plus the Europeans). It will be a high-threat environment.

    Besides that I see the ability to operate in pack ice as one of the most important characteristics of any surface combatant operating in the Arctic. In addition, the problem of operating in larger networked formations up there will require highly capable individual ships. Results in neither small, nor cheap vessels.

  70. Mike Burleson permalink*
    March 20, 2010 9:01 am

    Yeah, she a beaut! I also liked them pre-conversion. A boxy but workable design.

  71. March 20, 2010 8:59 am

    Nice pic’ of the Canuck Tribal; you have a good eye!!!!


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