The British Royal Navy’s newest survey ship, the HMS Magpie, has been commissioned into service at its home port in Devon, England.
HMS Magpie has been added to the Royal Navy’s Hydrographic squadron and is intended to replace its traditional survey ship HMS Gleaner, which previously served the naval unit for 35 years.
HMS Gleaner last commanding officer and HMS Magpie first commanding officer lieutenant commander William Alexander said: “It was a great feeling when we brought HMS Magpie into her base port for the first time last week and we are very much looking forward to joining the fleet.
“The ship’s primary role will be in maintaining the integrity of coastal waters, ensuring safety of navigation and the resilience of key national infrastructure in UK ports.
“With an enduring presence around the UK, she will also contribute to national security at sea.”
HMS Magpie has been named after the Duke of Edinburgh’s only command.
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The vessel is an 18m-long catamaran and is set to be used to ensure the navy is provided with an essential survey and underwater survey capability.
It has been equipped with the latest high-resolution, shallow-water multi-beam echo sounder and side-scan sonar.
The new survey ship is also able to launch remote-controlled underwater devices in order to search wide areas of the sea bed for obstructions and mines.
Furthermore, HMS Magpie is anticipated to carry out other operations such as scanning the seabed and updating charts.
The Royal Navy expects the ship to be able to maintain a speed of 20k in sea state four conditions with waves up to 2.5m high.
HMS Magpie previously underwent rough weather sea trials in the Irish Sea in April, less than a month after being launched with the navy.