The UK Royal Navy‘s Hunt-class mine countermeasures vessel HMS Cattistock has returned to frontline service after completing a major upgrade programme.
Carried out by BAE Systems in Portsmouth, the upgrade project included new engines, enabling the vessel to sail faster and stay at sea for longer.
BAE Systems Surface Ship Support Alliance head Harriet Clark said: "BAE Systems is proud to see HMS Cattistock re-dedicated today following a significant maintenance period at Portsmouth Naval Base which included a comprehensive upgrade to her propulsion system.
"The upgrade has introduced significant improvements, which have increased the ship’s capability to support global operations."
Capable of accommodating a crew of 45 with five officers, the 60m-long Hunt-class vessel can carry out minesweeping and minehunting, and can support patrol missions.
Featuring a Kelvin Hughes Type-1007 naval radar, operating at the I-band, the Hunt-class vessels are integrated with two Eca PAP 104 Mk3 remotely controlled vehicles, for the identification and disposal of mines.
With the latest upgrade, HMS Cattistock will be able to extend its serving life to 2030 and beyond, the Royal Navy stated.
HMS Cattistock commanding officer lieutenant commander Simon Coxsaid: "This day marks the end of HMS Cattistock’s refit and importantly her return to the fleet and operational service.
"It is testament to the hard work and professionalism of both the ship’s company and our industrial partners that together, success has been achieved."
The UK Royal Navy constructed a total of 13 Hunt Class minesweepers and minehunters between 1980 and 1989, and currently eight remain in service.
Image: The Royal Navy’s HMS Cattistock with HMS Dauntless in the background. Photo: courtesy of Royal Navy.