UK Royal Navy’s HMS Albion enters next phase of refit programme

6 November 2016 (Last Updated November 6th, 2016 18:30)

The UK Royal Navy's Albion-class amphibious command ship HMS Albion has entered into the next phase of its refit programme, with its own generators powering lighting and computer systems of the vessel.

The UK Royal Navy's Albion-class amphibious command ship HMS Albion has entered into the next phase of its refit programme, with its own generators powering lighting and computer systems of the vessel.

The amphibious warship is undergoing major refitting at Devonport Docks, Plymouth, UK under a two-year contract with Babcock.

So far, the upgrades carried out below the waterline have allowed the vessel to be floated out and then towed to a new basin from dry dock.

"We have done our utmost to keep the spirit of Albion alive certainly while we have been refitting her."

The vessel is equipped with a fresh-water cooling system, which will enable the on-board crew and the hi-tech systems to operate in the warmer Gulf region.

Further enhancements include fitting the vessel with 25 miles of new electrical cables, with two miles of pipework replaced, 100 pumps overhauled, 1,500 valves replaced, and 20,000m2 of steel in 34 ballast tanks preserved.

The updated weaponry of HMS Albion includes the Phalanx automated close-defence gun system, and Artisan radar, which can track more than 800 contacts from as close as 125ft or as far away as 125 miles, and a new command system.

The vessel is scheduled to undergo amphibious training with the Royal Marines and Commando Helicopter Force based at Royal Naval Air Station Yeovilton in the south west, prior to its first deployment.

HMS Albion weapon engineering head commander Mark Jones said: "We have done our utmost to keep the spirit of Albion alive certainly while we have been refitting her, with ship's company attending memorial services to Jutland, Remembrance Day parades, visiting our affiliates.

"That will only step up in 2017."


Image: HMS Albion undergoing refitting. Photo: courtesy of Royal Navy.