The UK Royal Navy’s sixth and final Type 45 Daring-class anti-air warfare vessel, HMS Duncan (D37), has set sail from Portsmouth, UK, to undergo sea trials.
During the seven-day testing, the ship will validate its combat systems and will also conduct general sea training off the south coast of the UK.
The 152.4m-long vessel has undergone maintenance by BAE Systems in preparation to the rigorous trials, scheduled over the coming months.
Scheduled to be commissioned into the Navy’s fleet in September, HMS Duncan has been designed to provide long-range radar and wide area defence capability for local area fleet defence as well as support anti-air warfare operations of the task force.
BAE Systems fleet services director Richard Dingley said: "Today marks a big milestone in HMS Duncan’s journey towards operational tasking and we are proud to have delivered her ready for the Royal Navy crew to take her to sea for the first time since she arrived in Portsmouth."
Powered by two WR-21 advanced cycle gas turbine engines with intercooler and recuperator (ICR) heat exchangers, the vessels of the class will replace the Type 42 frigates, which have been in service with the navy since the mid-1970s.
The 7,500t ships are armed with 114mm Mk8 mod 1 medium-calibre gun system, electro-optical gunfire control system (EOGCS) and Phalanx close-in weapons systems as well as principal anti-aircraft missile system (PAAMS).
Three of the Type 45 destroyers already delivered, namely HMS Daring (D32), HMS Dauntless (33) and HMS Diamond (D34), are currently in service with the Royal Navy.
HMS Dragon (D35) and HMS Defender (D36), the fourth and fifth vessels of the class have been commissioned into the frontline fleet earlier this year.
Image: HMS Duncan sails from Portsmouth. Photo: courtesy of Royal Navy.