Simga Class frigate

The Royal Moroccan Navy’s third and final Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding (DSNS)-built Sigma-class multi-mission frigate, Allal Ben Abdellah, has successfully completed sea acceptance trials (SAT).

During the SAT, the ship validated all onboard Thales supplied systems and its capability to perform functional chains for anti-air warfare, anti-surface warfare and electronic warfare missions.

Thales Nederland CEO Gerben Edelij said: "This SAT demonstrates that our vast experience in sensor technology and combat system integration enables us to realise such a complex programme within the time frame agreed upon."

As part of plans to modernise fleet and extend patrol capabilities, the Moroccan Navy had awarded $1.2bn contract to DSNS to build two light frigates Sigma 9813 and one Sigma 10145, which are modified versions of the existing class design.

Allal Ben Abdellah frigate has been installed with Thales systems, which include the Tacticos combat management system, Smart-S Mk2 surveillance radar, Lirod Mk2 fire control radar, target designation sights and UMS 4132 Kingklip hull-mounted sonar.

Additional features include Thales Tuum-4 under water telephone, the EW Suite comprising of integrated ESM Vigile 100 S and ECM Scorpion 2L, an integrated navigation system (INS), Bathythermograph Mk21 and the integrated communication system.

Powered by two Semt Pielstick diesel engines driving two controllable pitch propellers, the 97.9m-long Sigma-class frigate has a displacement capacity of 2,075t, a beam of 13.02m, a draft of 3.75m and is capable of carrying a crew of 91.

The first and second Sigma-class frigates, Tarik Ben Ziyad and Sultan Moulay Ismail, were commissioned in mid-2011 and late-2011 respectively, with the third frigate following in September 2012.

The Sigma-class programme has entered in warranty phase, marking a step closer to programme completion.

Image: Moroccan Navy’s SIGMA-class frigates feature Thales systems. Photo: courtesy of Thales Nederland.