The Formidable-class frigates are the principal combatants of the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN), and form the sharp edge of its fighting force to defend Singapore and protect our vital sea lines of communication. Since the commissioning of the first frigate in 2007, the frigates have pushed the operating envelope for the RSN across all dimensions – air, surface and underwater – in the maritime domain. Having been in service for close to two decades, the frigates will be upgraded to ensure they retain the capability and flexibility to meet evolving operational demands.
Enhancements to Frigates
In close collaboration with the Defence Science and Technology Agency as well as DSO National Laboratories, key upgrades in the frigate mid-life upgrade programme will comprise the following:
a. Enhanced Command & Control (C2) System. The frigates' Combat Management System (CMS) will be enhanced to harness the latest developments in advanced technologies such as in artificial intelligence. Together with improved sensors, this will enable the frigates to detect and react faster to potential threats.
b. Enhanced Combat Systems. Upgrades will be made to the frigates' weapons and communication systems to ensure that they retain the capability and flexibility to meet evolving operational demands, after being in service for almost two decades. The current Harpoon Surface-to-Surface Missile (SSM) will be replaced with the Blue Spear Surface-to-Surface Missile (SSM), while the ships' communication systems will be refreshed to increase the networking capacity of the frigates with the rest of the SAF.
c. Enhanced Operational Readiness. The Fleet Management System will be incorporated into the upgraded frigates. Information collected on the ships' platform and combat systems health status will be collated and used for pre-emptive engineering actions, to enhance the frigates' operational readiness.