Shipbuilding company Fincantieri has launched the Italian Navy’s latest multi-mission European frigate (FREMM) Spartaco Schergat at a ceremony at the integrated shipyard of Riva Trigoso in Genoa.

The newest frigate is the ninth of a series of ten FREMMs being built by Fincantieri within the framework of an Italo-French cooperation programme under the coordination of Organisation Conjointe de Cooperation sur l’Armement (OCCAR), the international organisation for cooperation on arms.

Fincantieri will continue fitting activities at the integrated naval shipyard of Muggiano, La Spezia. The Italian Navy is expected to receive the vessel next year.

Spartaco Schergat is designed to operate in different tactical situations. It measures 144m in length and has a beam of 19.7m.

With a displacement of around 6,700t, the vessel can cruise at a maximum speed of more than 27k and can accommodate a crew of 200 people.

"With a displacement of around 6,700t, the vessel can cruise at a maximum speed of more than 27k and can accommodate a crew of 200 people."

The FREMM programme was launched to replace the Italian Navy line ‘Lupo’ and ‘Maestrale’ class frigates, both built by Fincantieri in the 1970s.

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The company delivered the vessels ‘Carlo Bergamini’ and ‘Virginio Fasan’ in 2013, and the ‘Carlo Margottini’, the ‘Carabiniere’, the ‘Alpino’, the ‘Luigi Rizzo’, and the ‘Federico Martinengo’ in the subsequent five years.

The Italian Navy’s programme included an option for the construction of the ninth and tenth vessel, exercised in April 2015.

Orizzonte Sistemi Navali, which is a joint venture (JV) between Fincantieri (51%) and Leonardo (49%), is the prime contractor for Italy in the programme.

Armaris, a Naval Group-Thales JV, serves as the prime contractor for France.