Almirante Padilla-class frigate

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ARC Almirante Padilla (FM 51).jpg
Class overview
Name: Almirante Padilla class
Builders: Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft (HDW)
Operators:  Colombian National Navy
Built: 1981-1983
In commission: 1983-
Planned: 4
Completed: 4
Active: 4
General characteristics
Type: Corvette
Displacement: 2,100 tons loaded
Length: 99.1 m (325 ft)
Beam: 11.3 m (37 ft)
Draft: 3.7 m (12 ft)
Propulsion: 2 shaft, 4 MTU 20V 1163 TB92 Diesels 23,400 hp (17,400 kW)
Speed: 27.0 knots (50 km/h; 31 mph)
Range: 7,000 nautical miles (12,964 km; 8,055 mi) at 14 knots (26 km/h; 16 mph)
Complement: 92
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • SMART-S ( Mk2 version)
  • STING-EO Mk2
  • Terma Scanter 2001 X-band (after modernisation)
  • Atlas Elektronik ASO 4-2 (Hull Mounted)
Electronic warfare
& decoys:
  • 1 × Terma SKWS double mounting
Aircraft carried:

The Almirante Padilla-class corvette is a group of corvette operated by the Colombian Navy. The designation of this class is Type FS 1500 and there are 4 ships in service. The ships were built by Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft (HDW) at Kiel, Germany. Two similar ships operates as the Kasturi-class corvettes in the Malaysian Navy.




The Almirante Padilla class is powered by a CODAD propulsion system, provided by four MTU diesels driving two shafts and developing 23,400 horsepower (17,400 kW) driving two Controllable Pitch propellers. This gives a maximum speed of 28 knots (52 km/h; 32 mph), and a range of 7,000 nautical miles (13,000 km; 8,100 mi) at 14 kn (26 km/h; 16 mph).





The Almirante Padilla class does not have a hangar facility, and thus does not have an embarked helicopter. The landing platform aft is suitable for a Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm MBB Bo 105 CBS-5 or the Eurocopter AS-555-SN Fennec for over-the-horizon targeting.

Orion Program Upgrade[edit]

The Orion Program Upgrade was a mid-life refit performed by the Thales Group. In January 2012, Thales Group delivered the first upgraded Almirante Padilla-class frigate to the Colombian Navy.

The equipment upgrades included:

  • Smart-s Mk2 radar
  • TACTICOS combat system
  • Sting-EO Mk2 naval fire control tracking system
  • MIRADOR electro-optical multi-sensor surveillance, tracking and fire control system
  • Vigile Radar Electronic Support Measures (RESM) system
  • TERMA SKSW DL-12T decoy system
  • MTU M-93 engines
  • New communication systems

In addition, OTO Melara DART ammunition and 16 SSM-700K Hae Sung I (Sea Star) anti-ship missiles were ordered.[1] In September 2014, Colombia fired the DART guided ammunition from the Oto Melara 76 mm Strales. The testing was performed aboard Caldas.[2]



Almirante Padilla at sea
Almirante Padilla-class corvettes[3]
Name Pennant number Builder Laid down Launched Commissioned Fate
Almirante Padilla FM-51 Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft, Kiel 17 March 1981 6 January 1982 31 October 1983 In active service
Caldas FM-52 14 June 1981 23 April 1982 14 February 1984 In active service
Antioquia FM-53 22 June 1981 28 August 1982 30 April 1984 In active service
Independiente FM-54 22 June 1981 21 January 1983 27 July 1984 In active service


  1. ^ "Armada Nacional Compró Misiles Coreanos "C-Star" Para Equipar Sus Corbetas Misileras" (in Spanish). 30 November 2012. Retrieved 12 January 2015. 
  2. ^ Scott, Richard (17 September 2014). "Colombia conducts first DART firings". Jane' Retrieved 12 January 2015. 
  3. ^ Gardiner and Chumbley, p.69


  • Colombia: Seguridad & Defensa
  • Gardiner, Robert; Chumbley, Stephen & Budzbon, Przemysław (1995). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1947-1995. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-132-7.

External links[edit]

Media related to Almirante Padilla class corvettes at Wikimedia Commons