VORTEX CLASS | ANTISUBMARINE WARFARE
Length: 75 meters
Width: 9.8 meters
Draft: 3.9 meters
Displacement: 870 tons
The Vortex class Anti Submarine Warfare ship is a small but hugely important resource to the New Hayesalian Navy. Built to withstand harsh conditions and follow blue water fleets to the ends of the earth, Vortexes are a symbol of New Hayesalian naval determination.
Constructed of reinforced composite construction and painted with radar absorbent materials, the Vortex has a much lower radar cross section than would normally be expected of a ship this size. Its composite construction also reduces it's own sonar signature in the water.
An advanced automated damage-control system combines sensors, cameras and automated firefighting capabilities to ensure that the Vortex class has the fastest possible response time to life- and ship-threatening events. This system improves survivability in both peacetime and wartime while reducing the number of crewmembers needed for damage control. Depending on the section and the extent of damage, the ships can deploy either a water spray/mist system or use a Halon/Nitrogen dump system to quell fires. The ship's construction is very much modular in design with each module being composed of various self contained compartments. These compartments can be automatically or manually sealed off from the rest of the ship and can also be flooded with sea water. This flooding aids in fire control and can be used in the advent of immanent internal explosions to dampen the blasts by using the water to absorb the concussion as well as the water pressure reinforcing the strength of the compartment walls against the explosive force.
On the surface, the Vortex holds it's own but is best working alongside other combat vessels for protection. The Vortex uses an advanced TRS-4D AESA radar working in the C-band range, providing 360 degree targeting of air and surface threats of more than 1,000 targets at a maximum range of 250 kilometres. This resource can be pooled with other, larger ships.
The combat system is based on total ship computing environment (TSCE) utilizing open architecture, standardized software and commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware.
The ship is equipped with the SEWACO XI combat data system developed by Thales Naval Nederland. The RNIN's Centre for the Automation of Weapon and Command Systems (CAWCS) has developed the software. The system will use asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) network architecture.
The integrated bridge and navigation system consists of multi-function consoles capable of displaying various functions such as Sensor matrix output, electronic chart display and information systems (ECDIS) and NautoConning navigation data which reads and displays in a logically arranged manner and distributes the navigation data.
One of the consoles is dedicated for route planning purposes.
The integrated bridge and navigation system encompasses the ship steering and control equipment, a ring-laser based dual MINS marine inertial navigation system, two data distribution units and a complete set of navigational sensors and meteorological equipment. A redundant laid out Ethernet bus configuration interconnects the multi-function consoles and sensors.
The communications system has a high-capacity digital communications switch, which interconnects the voice and data communications channels. The system provides internal communications or open conference lines and access to external communications with various radio links and land-based networks. The upgradeable high-performance combat system is based on a high-speed data network. The combat system architecture will enable future weapon systems to be integrated into the frigates. The ship's standard external communications include Link 11, Link 16, Link 22, JTID and JSAT tactical data links, allowing full interoperability with allied forces. Internal communications include messaging, conventional and wireless telephony, public address, closed circuit television, and internet and intranet ports.
The Total Ship Computing Environment is an Open Architecture design. Designed to bind all the vessels systems together, the TSCE creates a shipboard enterprise network allowing seamless integration of all on-board systems. The network is makes use of the NW Canadian developed OMA Linux OS which is known for its ultra stability, and viral resistance. Multiple embedded single board computers are placed through out the vessel as well as three servers per zone. This allows for redundancy and task/load sharing. Are systems as well as data lines are shielded and armoured.
The vessel also has an extensive set of IR and Optical sensor systems, doubly effective against surface and aerial threats. These systems are for the most part installed on the top of superstructure for greater range of view but are also mounted in conjunction with the individual weapons stations to provide additional search, tracking and targeting capabilities.
The primary system are the MSIS electro-optic surveillance and fire control system is fitted on the vessels, which contains an 8–12-micron thermal imager, TV camera and laser rangefinder. These units also contain a new third-generation thermal imager with increased sensitivity and resolution.
The Vortex makes use of a pair of Udav-1 submarine defence systems, alongside two Multi Ammunition Softkill Launchers positioned underneath a rolling hatch on the top of the vessel. The rocket system is theoretically capable of attacking nearby submarines but is intended to provide a multi layer defense against torpedoes and frogmen. Each system has a total of 40 missiles inc. reloads, resulting in 80 anti-submarine and torpedo kill weapons onboard each ship.
The system consists of an ammunition loading device, fire controls and ground support equipment for crew manning each of the weapon systems. In addition, hardlinks between the launchers and the superstructure exist so they can be operated from the safety of the control deck and the control station at the Udav itself. Aside from that, the Udav-1 consists of the following;
Chief amongst the Vortexes tools is it's sonar detection equipment. The CAPTAS-4 spools from underneath the flight deck and above the waterline, with a dedicated station for the in-service 'sinker' remotely operated vehicle which both monitors the local thermoclines and can lower the array to detect submarine threats lurking in these parts.
This is complemented by the UMS 4110 Hull Mounted Sonar array, providing detection of torpedos and submarine targets over a very long and deep range, assisting to triangulate targets along with the CAPTAS-4 system. It also offers a wide array of passive frequency depection and monitoring, including LOFAR, DEMON and audio channels.
In essence where the CAPTAS-4 hunts for submarines in the thermal layers of the ocean, the UMS-4110 seeks those in the upper layers and imminent threats. Together a single Vortex can monitor threats over a 75 nautical mile range, and a team of Vortexes can triangulate a target before directing assets to respond, or attacking of it's own accord.
Additional countermeasures include the main gun, a 30mm Millenium Gun system, which acts as a Close In Weapon System as well as being able to fire at point targets including surface threats. The eight onboard Vertical Launch Cells, located ahead of the bridge, equip anti air missiles as well as anti-surface missiles, giving the vessel an organic though limited surface and air offensive capacity.
On board torpedo launchers are located above the hangars and are constituted as a dual pack with a single heavy and light torpedo launcher facing the port and starboard side of the vessel, launching the MU90 and F21 series torpedoes. As the Vortex generally travels along with other ships, her on-board helicopter is the most likely delivery platform for torpedoes, as are other vessels in the fleet.
The Vortex also has a built-in launcher/recovery system for the RQ-21A Blackjack drone, used for basic reconnaissance and search duties.
A considerable part of the ship's arsenal is the embarked EC-725 Caracal aircraft, fully equipped and specialised for ASW operations. The aircraft is housed underneath a telescoping aircraft hangar when not in use.
Two 5 metre rigid hull inflatable boats from the Goldfish series are crane launched from each side of the vessel when needed.