Decisive Phase of the Kormoran Vessel Sea Trials Programme About to Begin

Sea trials of the modern “Kormoran” mine-hunter have began last month, on the waters of the Bay of Gdansk. Three vessels of this class which are being built by a consortium consisting of the Remontowa Shipbuilding company, OBR CTM S.A. research and development facility and the Naval Shipyard, are expected to be ultimately received by the Polish Navy.

The scope of the sea trials includes checks related to the appliances, plants and general systems, as well as to the command and weapons control system installed on-board the ship. The latter element is being integrated by the OBR CTM S.A. research and development centre (Ośrodek Badawczo-Rozwojowy Centrum Techniki Morskiej S.A. - Maritime Technology Centre Research and Development Facility, also referred to as the CTM). The main goal of the sea trials programme which has just begun is to verify the ship’s readiness in a variety of operational and hydrolocation-related conditions.

President of the Board and General Director at the CTM facility, Andrzej Kilian PhD, Eng., noted that the new mine-hunter is going to play a quite significant role in the Polish maritime security system. The Kormoran-class vessels, once they are introduced into use, would also be probably expected to be involved in the operations carried out by the standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Groups. President Kilian noted the fact that the Centre managed by him has capabilities at its disposal, which shall also be used within the framework of other naval programmes, including the ones related to the Miecznik-class coastal defence vessels, or to the Czapla-class patrol-mine-hunting ship.

President of the PGZ S.A. company, Arkadiusz Siwko, on the other hand, described the Kormoran programme as an exemplification of cooperation between the Group’s companies and several private entities. Siwko also made a claim suggesting that PGZ S.A. is willing to become a partner for the Ministry of Defence, throughout the Navy modernization process, additionally hoping that more Navy-related contracts are going to be concluded by the companies gathered within the Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa S.A [Polish Armament Group].

The main task for the “Kormoran” vessel is to detect and act against naval mines, lead vessels through the mine-infested areas, carry out reconnaissance within the sea routes and remotely controlling a variety of anti-mine platforms. The vessel has also been tailored to act as a mine-layer. “Kormoran” is expected to operate in the Baltic Sea, North Sea and within other waters, also during the NATO allied initiatives. Provision of optimal and effective execution of the main tasks, with employment of the listed battle-related equipment, along with the communications, navigational and observation and passive defensive subsystems is going to be ensured thanks to a Polish-made Command and Weapons Control Suite. 

Among the key systems, from the point of view focusing on the combat operations carried out by the ship, one should list the following ones: command support system, ship signatures diminishing and monitoring system (including an anti-shock protection suite), sonar, as well as the applied mine countermeasures. The suites listed above have been developed by the Polish engineers and they are expected to be delivered by the CTM facility. 35 mm Tryton cannon is going to become the main element of the armament installed on-board the Kormoran-class vessels, with the purpose of providing self-defence.

Read more: 35 mm TRYTON Cannon for Kormoran Vessel

The agreement concerning the construction works pertaining to the mine-hunter has been signed in September 2013, by and between a consortium involving the Remontowa Shipbuilding shipyard, Ośrodek Badawczo-Rozwojowy Centrum Techniki Morskiej S.A. (CTM) and the Polish Naval Shipyard, and the Armament Inspectorate of the Polish Ministry of Defence. On the basis of the aforementioned contract, the vessel which is currently undergoing the sea trails is going to be delivered to the Navy during the fourth quarter of this year, with another two vessels to be delivered to the Polish Navy in the later period.