Malvar-class corvette

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PS-28 2009-06-27.jpg
Class overview
Name: Malvar class
Builders: Pullman Standard Car Manufacturing Co.; Albina Engine and Machine Works; Willamette Iron and Steel Corp.; Winslow Marine Railway and Shipbuilding; US
Operators:  Philippine Navy
Succeeded by: Rizal class
Active: 5[1]
Lost: 1
Retired: 4
General characteristics
Type: Patrol corvette
Displacement: 640 tons (standard), 914 Tons (Full Load)
Length: 184.5 ft (56.2 m)
Beam: 33 ft (10 m)
Draft: 9.75 ft (2.97 m)
Installed power: 2,200 hp
  • Main: 2 × GM 12-278A diesel engines
  • Auxiliary: 2 × GM 6-71 diesel engines with 100 kW gen and 1 × GM 3-268A diesel engine with 60 kW gen
Speed: 16 Knots (maximum),
Range: 6,600 nmi at 11 knots (20 km/h)
Complement: 85
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • SPS-50 Surface Search Radar (on PS-23)
  • SPS-21D Surface Search Radar (on PS-19 and PS-28)
  • CRM-NIA-75 Surface Search Radar (on PS-29, PS-31, and PS-32)
  • SPS-53A Surface Search Radar (on PS-20)
  • RCA SPN-18 I/J-band Navigation Radar
  • [2]

The Malvar class is a ship class of patrol corvettes of the Philippine Navy, and are currently its oldest class of corvettes. These ships were formerly used by the US Navy as Admirable-class minesweepers, and PCE-842-class and PCE(R)-848-class patrol craft, which were both based on the Admirable-class hull. In the Philippine Navy, the vessels have undergone upgrades and modifications, and have been re-categorized as corvettes.

One ship, the former USN USS Quest was supposedly a member of this class but was converted into a non-combatant Presidential Yacht by the Philippine Navy in 1948 as RPS Pag-asa (APO-21) (later on renamed as RPS Santa Maria, and as RPS/BRP Mount Samat)[3]


The PCE class of naval ships served with the United States Navy during the Second World War.

Out of the reserved US Navy units, six were transferred to the Philippines as part of the US Military Assistance Program (PS-28 to PS-33), while five were former South Vietnamese Navy units that escaped to the Philippines in 1975.

With 40 years of active duty with the Philippine Navy, ships of this class have been involved in local and international crisis, exercises, and incidents.

Technical details[edit]

Originally the ship was armed with one 3"/50 caliber dual purpose gun, two to six Bofors 40 mm guns, 1 Hedgehog depth charge projector, four depth charge projectiles (K-guns) and two depth charge tracks.[4]

The same configuration applied up until the late 1980s when the Philippine Navy removed most of its old anti-submarine weapons and systems, and three 20 mm Oerlikon guns and four 12.7 mm general purpose machine guns were installed, making it lighter and more suited for surface patrols, but losing its limited anti-submarine warfare capability.

The ship was originally powered by two Cooper Bessemer GSB-8 diesel engines, but these were replaced by two GM 12-567ATL diesel engines similar to her sister ships, with a combined rating of around 1,710 bhp (1,280 kW). These were then again replaced in the mid 1990s with two GM 12-278A diesels with a combined rating of around 2,200 bhp (1,600 kW) driving two propellers. The main engines can propel the 914 ton (full load) ship to a maximum speed of around 16 knots (30 km/h).[5]

Ships in class[edit]

Bow number Ship name Launched Commissioned Service Status
PS-18 [6] BRP Datu Tupas 14 November 1943 November 1975 Patrol Force Fate unknown
PS-19 BRP Miguel Malvar 1 March 1944 November 1975 Offshore Combat Force Active
PS-20 [7] BRP Magat Salamat 19 March 1944 November 1975 Offshore Combat Force Active
PS-22 BRP Sultan Kudarat 18 May 1943 November 1975 Offshore Combat Force Active
PS-23 BRP Datu Marikudo 18 March 1944 5 April 1976 Patrol Force Decommissioned 9 December 2010 [1]. Sold for scrap while her equipment stripped as spare part.
PS-28 BRP Cebu 10 November 1943 July 1948 Offshore Combat Force Active
PS-29 BRP Negros Occidental 24 February 1944 July 1948 Patrol Force Decommissioned 9 December 2010 [2]. Sold for scrap while her equipment were stripped as spare part.
PS-30 RPS Leyte 20 June 1944 July 1948 Patrol Force Grounded and lost in 1978.
PS-31 BRP Pangasinan 24 April 1943 July 1948 Offshore Combat Force Active
PS-32 BRP Iloilo 3 August 1943 July 1948 Offshore Combat Force Decommissioned September 2016.[8] Her weapons, machinery and electronics were striped down for spare parts, hull awaiting disposal
PS-33 [9] RPS Samar 20 November 1943 24 May 1948 Patrol Force Decommssioned in the 1980s.



  1. ^ Philippine Fleet Official Website. Commissioned ships and crafts Archived 2012-07-15 at
  2. ^ Jane's Fighting Ships 2004-2005
  3. ^ NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive Quest (AM-281)
  4. ^ NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive. Gayety (MSF 239) ex-AM-239.
  5. ^ DLSU N-ROTC Office. Naming and Code Designation of PN Vessels Archived 2011-09-28 at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive.Shelter (MSF 301).
  7. ^ NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive.Gayety (MSF 239) ex-AM-239.
  9. ^ NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive.Project (AM 278).

External links[edit]