A steel cutting ceremony was held for the Italian Navy’s lead Multipurpose Offshore Patrol Ship (PPA) at Fincantieri’s shipyard in Muggiano (La Spezia), officially marking the beginning of construction works on the first unit.
The first of seven new builds, the PPA will be delivered in 2021 and it is part of the renewal plan of the operational lines of the Italian Navy vessels, approved by the Government and Parliament and started in May 2015.
The project as a whole involves the construction of nine units, including seven PPAs, one multipurpose amphibious unit (LHD or Landing Helicopter Dock), and one logistic support unit (LSS or Logistic Support Ship).
The multipurpose offshore patrol vessel is a flexible ship with the capacity to serve multiple functions, ranging from patrol with sea rescue capacity to Civil Protection operations and, in its most highly equipped version, first line fighting vessel. There will be different configurations of combat system: starting from a “soft” version for the patrol task, integrated for self-defense ability, to a “full” one, equipped for a complete defense ability. The vessel is also capable of operating high-speed vessels such as RHIB (Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat) up to 11 meters long through lateral cranes or a hauling ramp located at the far stern.
- 132.5 meters long
- Speed more than 33 knots according to vessel configuration and operational conditions
- 171 persons of the crew
Equipped with a combined diesel, a gas turbine plant (CODAG) and an electric propulsion system
- Capacity to supply drinking water to land
Capacity to provide electricity to land with 2,000 kw of power
2 modular zones at the stern and at the center of the ship that allow the embarking of various types of containerized operating/logistic/residential/healthcare modules (in particular, the stern area may receive and handle within a covered area up to 5 modules in ISO 20” containers, while the central zone may receive and handle up to 8 ISO 20” containers)
The PPAs will be built at the Integrated Shipyard of Riva Trigoso and Muggiano, with delivery expected, for the first vessel of the class, in 2021, while the following deliveries will take place in 2022, 2023, 2024 (two units), 2025 and 2026.