The UK Royal Navy has launched its latest anti-air warfare destroyer HMS Defender on the Clyde River from the BVT Surface Fleet shipyard at Govan in Glasgow.

HMS Defender is the Royal Navy’s fifth Type 45 Destroyer and has a range of capabilies including, air defence, anti-missile capabilities, and the ability to carry 60 Royal Marines as well as operating a Chinook-sized helicopter from the main decks.

Chief of Materiel Fleet Vice Admiral Andrew Mathews said that the defender’s main role would be to provide air defence for the navy’s new aircraft carriers.

“Her world-class Sea Viper missile system can defend against multiple attacks by the most sophisticated anti-ship missiles,” he said.

“Defender will be capable of carrying out a wide range of operations, including anti-piracy and anti-smuggling activities, disaster-relief work and surveillance operations as well as high-intensity warfighting.”

Defender is the fifth ship of six in the Type 45 destroyer class. HMS Daring is undergoing final trials, while Dauntless and Diamond have also begun trials. Dragon was launched in Scotland in 2008 and construction has just started on ship six, HMS Duncan.