The Estonian Navy is set to modernize its three Sandown class minehunters for EUR 30 million, it has been announced.
The modernization is to include improvements in mine clearance and marine surveillance capacities.
The vessels will get new, identical, mine clearance systems which will be more up-to-date and reliable, thus requiring less maintenance. The project also includes training teams for operating the new technology.
The cost savings here will mean resources can be used more efficiently, the Center for Defense Investment said.
The first modernized vessel is scheduled to reach Estonian waters at the end of 2018 and the remaining two by the end of 2019.
A minehunter is a naval vessel that seeks, detects and destroys individual sea mines, as opposed to a minesweeper, which clears areas of mines without prior detection.
The Sandown class of minehunter is a British-built ship and was first commissioned in 1989. The three Estonian vessels, the Admiral Cowan, the Sakala and the Ugandi, were all previously in the British Royal Navy service and were commissioned in the late 1980s – early 1990s. The only other operator of the Sandown class is the Royal Saudi Navy, which also runs three ships. (ERR/Business World Magazine)
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