Visby, the lead ship of a new class of stealth corvettes, has been handed over to the Swedish Defence Force. The final delivery of the ship by FMV, the Swedish Armed Forces Materiel Administration, to the Armed Forces, is entering its final stages.
“There remain several trials and exams before we can start using HMS Visby fully but right now it feels good that the ship is finally delivered to the Armed Forces,” said Anna-Karin Broth, commander of 41.korvettdivisionen, the 41st Corvette Division. This unit, one of four divisions of the Fourth Naval Warfare Flotilla, will operate the Visby-class corvettes, the Swedish Defence Forces said.
Two Visby-class corvettes are planned to be included in the Fourth Naval Warfare Flotilla. “We are currently training crews for the next ship that is very high-tech. Its 43-strong crew of officers and ratings must have solid training to handle the ship and its systems,” said Anna-Karin.
“The vessel has repeatedly demonstrated outstanding results. I look forward to soon begin using its capabilities as intended,” said Anna-Karin.
With a length of 73 meters, HMS Visby has the ability to fire missiles, hunt for mines, and detect and combat submarines. The Visby class of corvette has a complement of 43 officers and ratings. It has a displacement of 640 tonnes and is propelled by water jets giving a top speed of around 35 knots.
The Visby’s angular design and use of composite materials (a PVC core with a carbon fibre and vinyl laminate for the hull) reduces its radar signature. The 57 mm cannon barrel can be folded into the turret to reduce its cross section.
A helicopter, such as the AgustaWestland A109M selected by Sweden, can land, take off, and refuel on the upper deck.
The first ship of the class was launched in 2000 and since then the construction has been fraught with repeated delays. On December 16, 2009, the first two of the corvettes were delivered to the Royal Swedish Navy (K32 and K33). The only weapon that had been integrated and test fired on the ships was the Bofors 57 Mk3 gun. The FMV calls this Version 4, which aims to get the ships into service and start training crews.
Visby (K31) is a Version 5 model and was the first of the corvettes to be upgraded to this standard. Five Visby class corvettes have been launched.