Friday, 8 June 2018

First UK Type 45 at sea with Shaman CESM fit

‘Deck edge’ HF antennas are mounted on the superstructure port and starboard. Source: Richard Scott/NAVYPIX

Richard Scott, London - Jane's Navy International

05 June 2018

Key Points

  • HMS Defender is the first UK RN Type 45 destroyer to receive the Shaman CESM fit
  • The Shaman CESM is based on the US Navy’s AN/SSQ-130(V) Ship’s Signal Exploitation Equipment Increment F

HMS Defender has become the first UK Royal Navy (RN) Type 45 destroyer to receive the AN/SSQ-130(V) Ship's Signal Exploitation Equipment (SSEE) Increment F communications electronic support measures (CESM) system.

Procured under Project ‘Shaman’ the new CESM capability is described by the RN as “an essential information, surveillance, targeting, and reconnaissance tool in the delivery of maritime force protection, security and manoeuvre”. Already in US Navy (USN) service, SSEE Increment F is being acquired under a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) case with the US government; the equipment is produced by Boeing-owned systems and sensors house ArgonST.

Defender returned to sea in April this year after completing an 18-month deep maintenance period at HM Naval Base Portsmouth. While the Ministry of Defence’s (MoD’s) Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) organisation has declined to specifically identify the Shaman fit, it has previously acknowledged that Defender has received “a large number of additions and alterations” including “the fitting of additional and improved sensors”.

The June edition of the RN’s semi-official magazine, Navy News, provided further confirmation, noting the installation of new “signals intelligence equipment and electronic surveillance kit” during Defender’s maintenance period.

Pictures of Defender taken post-refit clearly show the new antenna fits associated with the SSEE Increment F equipment. These include an AS-4692 VHF/UHF tapered slotted array direction finding/acquisition array fitted on the communications mast, AS-4293A VHF/UHF omnidirectional acquisition arrays fitted fore and aft, and a series of ‘deck edge’ HF antennas mounted on the superstructure port and starboard.


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