HMS Dauntless (D33)

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For other ships of the same name, see HMS Dauntless.
HMS Dauntless-1.jpg
HMS Dauntless, outward bound from Portsmouth Naval Base, 2010
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Dauntless
Ordered: December 2000
Builder: BAE Systems Surface Fleet Solutions
Yard number: 1062[1]
Laid down: 28 August 2004
Launched: 23 January 2007
Commissioned: 3 June 2010[2]
  • Nil Desperandum
  • Latin: "Never Despair"
Status: In active service, as of 2014
Badge: HMS Dauntless Badge.jpg
General characteristics
Class & type: Type 45 guided missile destroyer
Displacement: 8,000 t (7,900 long tons; 8,800 short tons)[5]
Length: 152.4 m (500 ft 0 in)
Beam: 21.2 m (69 ft 7 in)
Draught: 7.4 m (24 ft 3 in)
Installed power:
Speed: In excess of 29 kn (54 km/h; 33 mph)[7]
Range: 7,000 nautical miles (13,000 km) at 18 kn (33 km/h)
Complement: 190
Sensors and
processing systems:
Electronic warfare
& decoys:
Aircraft carried:
Aviation facilities:
  • Large flight deck
  • Enclosed hangar

HMS Dauntless is the second ship of the Type 45 or Daring-class air-defence destroyers built for the Royal Navy. She was launched at Govan in January 2007, was handed over to the Royal Navy on 3 December 2009 and was formally commissioned on 3 June 2010.

Operational history[edit]

Dauntless’s construction began at the BAE Systems Naval Ships yard at Govan in August 2004 on the River Clyde. She was launched on 23 January 2007 at 3.25 pm by Lady Burnell-Nugent, wife of Admiral Sir James Burnell-Nugent, the then-Commander-in-Chief Fleet. Dauntless is the adopted warship of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Because her modules were put together outside at BAE Govan, it was possible to complete more of her structure than her sister ship, Daring, which was launched from the covered facility at Scotstoun the previous year. Upon completing her fitting out stage, HMS Dauntless sailed from the Clyde for the first time on 14 November 2008 to conduct sea trials, testing power and propulsion, weapons and communications systems. Although not yet transferred to the Royal Navy, some of her future crew sailed with her.[12]

Dauntless arrived at HMNB Portsmouth for the first time on 2 December 2009, and was formally handed over to the Ministry of Defence by her builders on 3 December 2009.[13][14] During her sea trials Dauntless made her inaugural visit to her affiliated city of Newcastle upon Tyne in May 2010. HMS Dauntless was commissioned on 3 June 2010 in the presence of her sponsor.[15] The MoD confirmed on 1 October 2010 that she had completed the first Sea Viper firing on a Hebridean firing range earlier in the week,[16] and the ship was accepted into service on 16 November the same year.[17]

Recent service[edit]

Dauntless (foreground), the Spanish Almirante Juan de Borbon, and USS Gettysburg underway in formation during exercise Saxon Warrior 11

In May 2011, Dauntless took part in Exercise Saxon Warrior in the Western Approaches, culminating in a so-called 'Thursday War'.[18]

In June 2011, Dauntless sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to Norfolk, Virginia to take part in the FRUKUS war game exercises between Russia, France, the United States and the United Kingdom. En route in the Atlantic she rendezvoused and conducted manoeuvres with the Russian destroyer Admiral Chabanenko, which was also heading for the FRUKUS exercises, conducting cross helicopter exercises which saw Dauntless' two Lynx helicopters land on the Admiral Chabanenko. The deployment was the first time that two Lynxs had been deployed aboard a Type 45 destroyer.[19][20]

In September 2011, Dauntless was the first of the Type 45 destroyers to visit London. She sailed up the Thames and berthed opposite London City Airport for the Defence and Security Equipment International event.[21] On 25 November 2011, HMS Dauntless hosted Abdullah Gül, President of the Republic of Turkey.[22]

In January 2012, it was announced that Dauntless would deploy to the South Atlantic to replace HMS Montrose which was stationed around the Falkland Islands. The deployment was condemned by the government of Argentina, which claimed that the UK was "militarising the South Atlantic", despite the replacement representing only a modest increase in fighting capacity.[23][24][25] In 2015, Dauntless re-sailed for the Middle East after a short delay, with a plan to take part in the centenary of the Gallipoli Campaign.[26] She is expected to conduct anti-piracy patrols, as well as provide escort to U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) which is involved in airstrikes against ISIL.[27] In November 2015, she participated with other NATO air defence ships in a "At Sea Demonstration", focusing on anti-ballistic missile warfare.[28]


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 manoeuvrable sea skimming anti-ship missiles travelling at supersonic speeds.[29] The Royal Navy describes the destroyers' mission as being "to shield the Fleet from air attack".[30] 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.[31] 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.[29] 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.[32] 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".[32] 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]

Commanding officers[edit]

  • 2009-2011: Captain Richard Powell RN
  • 2011-2012: Captain William Warrender RN
  • 2012–2015: Commander Adrian Fryer RN
  • 2015-Present: Commander Charles Guy RN


HMS Dauntless under construction at HMNB Portsmouth, July 2005.


  1. ^ The Harpoon missile is to be fitted to four of the six ships. HMS Duncan is to be the first.[10]
  1. ^ "HMS Dauntless at Clydebuilt database". Retrieved 21 June 2009. 
  2. ^ "Royal Navy on Crest of a Wave". Royal Navy. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  3. ^ "Royal Navy Bridge Card, February 2009" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-07-04. Retrieved 2009-06-20. 
  4. ^ "World Shipping Register - Ship Index". Retrieved 2009-07-12. 
  5. ^ "Type 45 Destroyer". Royal Navy. Retrieved 2011-11-06. 
  6. ^ "HMS Daring". Wärtsilä. Retrieved 2011-08-01. 
  7. ^ MacDermid, Alan (2007-08-15). "Daring is mean, green and built for speed". The Herald. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  8. ^ "Raytheon Press Release" (PDF). 2006-03-08. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  9. ^ "Jane's Electro-Optic Systems". 2010-10-28. Retrieved 2011-08-21. 
  10. ^ Royal Navy - HMS Duncan,
  11. ^ "Air Defence Destroyer (Type 45)". Royal Navy. Archived from the original on 2006-10-31. Retrieved 2007-11-20. 
  12. ^ Damien Henderson (2008-11-15). "HMS Dauntless departs for trials as Dragon is prepared for launch". The Herald (Glasgow). Retrieved 2008-11-16. 
  13. ^ "Dauntless Enters Portsmouth". Royal Navy Website. 2 December 2009. Retrieved 2009-12-02. 
  14. ^ "New warship handed over to Navy". BBC News Website. 3 December 2009. Retrieved 2009-12-03. 
  15. ^ "HMS Dauntless commissioned into fleet". Ministry of Defence. Retrieved 2010-09-27. 
  16. ^ "Sea Viper fired from Type 45". 1 October 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  17. ^ "Dauntless enters into service". The News. 18 November 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  18. ^ "George Bush bound for Portsmouth after war games with Royal Navy". Navy News. 23 May 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  19. ^ "Tsar turn from Dauntless at war games". Navy News. 22 June 2011. Retrieved 2011-06-22. 
  20. ^
  21. ^ "London Calling For HMS Dauntless". Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^ "HMS Dauntless destroyer deployed to Falklands by navy". BBC News. 31 January 2012. 
  25. ^ "Downing Street denies UK is 'militarising' Falklands". BBC News. 8 February 2012. 
  26. ^
  27. ^ "HMS Dauntless arrives East of Suez". Royal Navy. 28 January 2015. Retrieved 29 January 2015. 
  28. ^
  29. ^ a b Lombardi, Ben. "The Type 45 Daring-Class Destroyer". U.S. Naval War College. Retrieved 20 May 2014.  External link in |work= (help)
  30. ^ "TYPE 45 DESTROYER". Royal Navy. Retrieved 20 May 2014.  External link in |work= (help)
  31. ^ Beedall, Richard. "UK PAAMS". navy-matters. Retrieved 2012.  External link in |work= (help)
  32. ^ a b "Aster Anti-Missile Missile" (PDF). MBDA. Retrieved 20 May 2014.  External link in |work= (help)
  33. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "'Affiliations | Royal Navy'". Royal Navy Website. Retrieved 2013-02-10. 

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