Estonian Defense Extend Thales Naval Support
Thales U.K. signed a contract with the Estonian Defense Forces to provide an additional four years of technical support and maintenance to two former Royal Navy (RN) mine countermeasures vessels (MCMVs) now serving with the Estonian fleet.
The contract provides a framework to achieve cost savings while accessing a wider range of support activities than previously provided. Thales offers a complete range of services and support packages to suit specific operational and maintenance requirements.
The two former RN Sandown-class vessels – HMS Sandown and HMS Inverness – were decommissioned and sold to Estonia in 2006. The vessels were renamed ENS Admiral Cowan and ENS Sakala.
As part of a program to return the two ships to operational service, Thales originally signed a contract in 2006 to provide operational support to the ships in service and upgrades to Thales U.K.’s Sonar 2093 system. This new contract now extends the support program until December 2016.
Sonar 2093 is a variable-depth sonar system and is designed for the detection and classification of bottom and moored mines. It is optimized for littoral (coastal) and open-ocean waters and is effective against all known mine types.
The system is in service with the RN’s remaining Sandown-class MCMVs, and existing export contracts include Japan, Australia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Italy and the Republic of Korea.