Combat Boat 90 (CB90) is a fast military assault craft developed by Dockstavarvet. It was originally built to replace the Swedish Navy’s aging Tpbs 200 class. It represents the export version of Strp 90H, the official Swedish designation wherein H stands for the vessel’s ability to transport and deploy half a platoon of fully armed amphibious infantry. The ship was commissioned in 1991.
The vessel can function as a fast assault and coastal defence boat, a patrol boat or as a special operations support vessel. It can also be used for reconnaissance, surveillance and intelligence gathering operations.
The series of CB90 boats are currently in use by the naval forces of multiple countries including Norway (as the S90N), Greece, Mexico (as the CB90 HMN) Malaysia and Brazil.
The ship is designed to offer sea-keeping, speed, efficiency and safety in different operating conditions. Constructed from aluminium, CB90 is lightweight with an overall length of 14.9m. The ship has a displacement of 18t, 3.85m maximum beam and a shallow draught. It has a typical chine hull configuration with reverse sheer and a narrow landing ramp at the front with one-man capacity.
The vessel can accommodate 21 fully armed soldiers and load up to 4.5t of cargo. A splinter protected wheelhouse module accommodates two operator seats and a middle jump seat within a compact aircraft-style cockpit.
The jump seat can swing into and out of place. Immediately below the cockpit, is a bulkhead that is divided by a passageway extending to a bow ramp landing area. The unique drop bow system allows rapid deployment of troops and quick extraction of casualties ashore.
The mid-section of the boat serves as the troop compartment, accommodating soldiers along and their equipment. The aft 25% of the hull is configurable and can act as either a floating command post with additional communication gear or as a gunboat with options for the positioning of the armament.
Several variants of the CB90 have been built to suit specific roles. The CB90HI is the export version of the Strb HS 90, where S refers to ‘Skyddad’ (swedish for protected).
The CB90 HEX is a hybrid between the CB90 H and the CB90N, referred to as the Stridsbåt 90N (SB90N) by the Norwegian navy. The CB90 HEX has been customised for the Royal Malaysian Navy, Mexican Navy, the Royal Swedish Navy (RSwN) Amphibious Corps and the Hellenic Coast Guard.
The CB90 NL is fitted with battalion-level command and control, computer and communications equipment and a back-up generator to supply power when the engines are not operating. The L refers to ‘Ledning’, which means command or leadership in Swedish.
The vehicle is armed with three browning M2HB machine guns. A 12.7mm machine gun (or a 40mm grenade launcher) is fixed on a ring mount aft of the wheelhouse.
This can be replaced with remote controlled, stabilised weapons for the ring mount gun position. The twin 12.7mm is installed in front of the helmsman’s position in traverse.
The boat is also mounted with one Mk 19 grenade launcher and a modified Hellfire-type RBS 17 SSM system. Four 2.8t naval mines or six depth charges can also be carried.
The CB90 is powered by two 600kW diesel engines that can cruise at speeds of up to 45kt with high manoeuvrability in shallow coastal waters. The non-military patrol craft version of the ship can be equipped with two 550kW diesels engines, providing maximum speeds of up to 45kt.
The vessel has two Kamewa FF water jets that are partially ducted. This feature of the water jets, along with the underwater control surfaces, allows the vessel to take extremely sharp turns even at high speeds. The maximum range is 440km at 20 kts (37km/h) speed. Even on unprepared beaches, the boat is fully equipped to carry out forceful landing.
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