The latest design of the Royal Navy's Type 26 Global Combat Ship (T26 GCS), the next generation of warships, has been unveiled.
The Ministry of Defence has released images showing the basic specification of the T26 GCS, which is a significant milestone in the development of this programme. The creation of the vessel will sustain thousands of jobs in the shipbuilding industry.
The multi-mission warship, which is due to come into service after 2020, will be used by the Royal Navy in combat and counter-piracy operations, and to support humanitarian and disaster relief work around the world.
Since 2010 the MOD has been working with BAE Systems to determine the ship's basic capabilities and baseline design. Now that has been endorsed, the programme can progress to the next part of the assessment phase, which will examine the detailed specifications of the vessel.
With a displacement of around 5,400 tonnes, the T26 GCS will be around 148m in length, and among the most advanced vessels in the Royal Navy's fleet.
The T26 GCS is expected to feature:
• vertical missile silos capable of housing a range of different weapons
• a medium-calibre gun
• a hangar to accommodate a Merlin or Wildcat helicopter, and a flexible mission space for unmanned air, surface and underwater vehicles, or additional boats
• the most advanced sensors available to the fleet.