The UK Royal Navy's Type 45 Daring-class anti-air warfare destroyer, HMS Duncan, has set sail on its nine-month maiden deployment from Portsmouth Naval Base.
The destroyer will work with allies in the Mediterranean, Middle East and Gulf to safeguard ally and merchant shipping, as well as broader British interests in the region.
HMS Duncan commanding officer Commander Rich Atkinson said: "I am immensely proud of the achievements of my ship's company over the last 12 months.
"All the engineering work and successful operational training means that HMS Duncan is now the world's most advanced air defence warship and is ready to play a key role in defending international trade, freedoms and Britain's interests.
"Following significant engineering upgrades and a long period of operational sea training, HMS Duncan is ready in all respects to undertake any and all missions that she may be tasked to undertake ranging from counter piracy and disaster relief to defence engagement and high-intensity conflict."
Commissioned in September 2013, HMS Duncan is the last of the six Type 45 destroyers that will carry both navy sailors and Royal Marines to counter the threat from pirates, terrorists and smugglers.
Armed with the Sea Viper missile system to track and destroy several aircraft and missile targets, HMS Duncan will serve as a floating base for a Royal Navy Lynx Mark 8 maritime helicopter.
Type 45 destroyers have been designed to replace the Type 42 frigates currently in service and deployed by the navy since the mid-1970s.
Image: HMS Duncan sails past Round Tower. Photo: courtesy of Royal Navy.