HMS Defender (D36)

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For other ships of the same name, see HMS Defender.
Royal Navy Destroyer HMS Defender (D36).jpg
Career (UK) Royal Navy Ensign
Name: HMS Defender
Ordered: December 2000
Builder: BAE Systems Surface Ships
Laid down: 31 July 2006
Launched: 21 October 2009
Sponsored by: Lady Julie Massey
Commissioned: March 21, 2013
Identification: Deck code: DF
Pennant number: D36
International callsign: GMIB[1]
IMO number: 4907878
Motto: Fendendo vince
("By defence I conquer")
Status: In active service, as of 2014
Badge: Crest of HMS Defender.jpg
General characteristics
Class and type: Type 45 destroyer
Displacement: 8,000 t (7,900 long tons; 8,800 short tons)[2]
Length: 152.4 m (500 ft 0 in)
Beam: 21.2 m (69 ft 7 in)
Draught: 7.4 m (24 ft 3 in)
Propulsion: 2 shafts Integrated electric propulsion (IEP);
Speed: In excess of 29 kn (54 km/h; 33 mph)[4]
Range: 7,000 nautical miles (13,000 km) at 18 kn (33 km/h)
Complement: 190
Sensors and
processing systems:
Electronic warfare
and decoys:
Armament: Anti-air missiles:

Sea Viper air defence system.
1 × 48-cell Sylver A50 VLS, for a combination of 48:
Aster 15 missiles (range 1.7-30 km)
Aster 30 missiles (range 3-120 km)

Anti-ship missiles:
2 × quad Harpoon launchers[N 1]

1 × BAE 4.5 inch Mk 8 naval gun
2 × Oerlikon 30 mm guns
2 × Phalanx CIWS
2 × Miniguns
6 × General purpose machine guns

Aircraft carried: 1–2× Lynx HMA8, armed with;
  • Sea Skua anti ship missiles, or
  • 2× anti submarine torpedoes

Westland Merlin HM1,[7] armed with:

  • 4× anti submarine torpedoes
Aviation facilities:
  • Large flight deck
  • Enclosed hangar

HMS Defender is the fifth of the Type 45 or Daring-class air-defence destroyers built for the Royal Navy. She is the eighth ship to bear the name. Construction of Defender began in 2006, and she was launched in 2009. The ship completed her first sea trials in October–November 2011, and was commissioned during March 2013.

Operational history[edit]

HMS Defender prior to launch.
HMS Defender escorting USS George H.W. Bush during Operation Shader on 1 October, 2014.

Defender‍ '​s construction began at the BAE Systems Naval Ships (now part of BAE Systems Surface Ships) yard at Govan on the River Clyde in July 2006. The launch date was 21 October 2009.[8] On 21 October 2011, she left Scotstoun shipyard in Glasgow on her maiden voyage exactly two years to the day after she was launched, to conduct her first stage of sea trials. These trials were completed in mid-November. On 9 March 2012, she once again left the Clyde to commence a second round of trials, scheduled to last 28 days in the waters off western Scotland.[9] She was scheduled to be formally handed over to the Royal Navy and commissioned in 2013. The ship left Scotstoun on 21 July 2012 on her delivery voyage. Defender entered Portsmouth at 10:00 on 25 July 2012 where BAE Systems and the Royal Navy conducted a formal handover ceremony. At 14:00 that day she raised her White Ensign for the first time as a Royal Naval vessel under the command of Commander Phil Nash. Defender was commissioned on 21 March 2013.[10] She stopped off at her home on the Clyde for final testing and was open to members of the public on Saturday 30 November 2013 before going into active service.[11]

Recent service[edit]

Defender sailed 700 miles from Portsmouth to the north east of Scotland on 19 December 2013 to meet the Russian task group of 6 ships including the aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov and accompany them down the east coast of Scotland. The vessels were held back by bad weather and had anchored in the Moray Firth.[12]

Defender has been part of Operation Shader, being an air defence guard ship for the US Carrier Task Force 50.[13]


Advanced air-defence[edit]

Further information: PAAMS, SAMPSON, S1850M and Aster (missile family)

The Type 45 destroyers are primarily designed for anti-air warfare with the capability to defend against sophisticated targets such as fighter aircraft, drones as well as highly maneuverable sea skimming anti-ship missiles travelling at supersonic speeds.[14] The Royal Navy describes the destroyers' mission as being "to shield the Fleet from air attack".[15] The Type 45 destroyer is equipped with the sophisticated Sea Viper (PAAMS) air-defence system utilizing the SAMPSON active electronically scanned array multi-function radar and the S1850M long-range radar. The PAAMS system is able to track over 2,000 targets and simultaneously control and coordinate multiple missiles in the air at once, allowing a large number of tracks to be intercepted and destroyed at any given time. This makes the PAAMS system particularly difficult to swamp during a saturation attack, even against supersonic targets.[16] The USNWC has suggested that the SAMPSON radar is capable of tracking 1,000 objects the size of a cricket ball travelling at three times the speed of sound (Mach 3), emphasising the system's capabilities against high performance stealth targets.[14] A core component of the PAAMS air-defence system is the Aster missile, composing of the Aster 15 and Aster 30. MBDA describe Aster as a "hit-to-kill" anti-missile missile capable of intercepting all types of high performance air threats at a maximum range of 120 km.[17] The Aster missile is autonomously guided and equipped with an active RF seeker enabling it to cope with "saturated attacks" thanks to a "multiple engagement capability" and a "high rate of fire".[17] Presently the Daring-class destroyers are equipped with a 48-cell A50 Sylver Vertical Launching System allowing for a mix of up-to 48 Aster 15 and 30 missiles.

Weapons, countermeasures, capabilities and sensors[edit]



  1. ^ The Harpoon missile is to be fitted to four of the six ships. HMS Duncan is to be the first.[21]
  1. ^ "Royal Navy Bridge Card, February 2011" (PDF). Retrieved 2011-04-18. [dead link]
  2. ^ "Type 45 Destroyer". Royal Navy. Retrieved 2011-11-06. 
  3. ^ "HMS Daring". Wärtsilä. Retrieved 2011-08-01. 
  4. ^ MacDermid, Alan (2007-08-15). "Daring is mean, green and built for speed". The Herald. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  5. ^ "Raytheon Press Release" (PDF). 2006-03-08. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  6. ^ "Jane's Electro-Optic Systems". 2010-10-28. Retrieved 2011-08-21. 
  7. ^ "Air Defence Destroyer (T45)". Royal Navy. Retrieved 2007-11-20. [dead link]
  8. ^ Stewart, Catriona (21 October 2009). "Clyde's new ship to make a splash". Evening Times (Evening Times). p. 22. 
  9. ^ "Defender resumes her sea trials as new destroyer prepares to join the Fleet". Royal Navy. 2012-03-12. Retrieved 2012-03-15. 
  10. ^ "BBC News - HMS Defender commissioning ceremony held in Portsmouth". 2013-03-21. Retrieved 2014-02-03. 
  11. ^ "BBC News - HMS Defender returns to Glasgow ahead of public opening". 2013-11-29. Retrieved 2014-02-03. 
  12. ^ Ministry of Defence (2014-01-09). "Destroyer meets Russian task force along UK coastline - News stories". GOV.UK. Retrieved 2014-02-06. 
  13. ^
  14. ^ a b Lombardi, Ben. "The Type 45 Daring-Class Destroyer". U.S. Naval War College. Retrieved 20 May 2014. 
  15. ^ "TYPE 45 DESTROYER". Royal Navy. Retrieved 20 May 2014. 
  16. ^ Beedall, Richard. "UK PAAMS". navy-matters. Retrieved 2012. 
  17. ^ a b "Aster Anti-Missile Missile" (PDF). MBDA. Retrieved 20 May 2014. 
  18. ^ Nicoll, Vivienne (12 May 2009). "City home to hi-tech warship". Evening Times. Retrieved 2009-10-21. 
  19. ^ "Glasgow’s Affiliation With Royal Navy’s Fifth Type 45 Destroyer, HMS Defender, Officially Announced". Royal Navy. 7 May 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-21. 
  20. ^ "Royal Navy offers city the chance to affiliate with advanced warship". This Is Exeter. 11 Sep 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-21. 
  21. ^ Royal Navy - HMS Duncan,

External links[edit]