Action before – or even without – being detected
How is that achieved? The design of the Visby-class corvette is based on profound experience centered on key areas for any littoral vessel; stealth, speed and manoeuvrability.
Visby-class corvette is a flexible surface combatant, designed for a wide range of roles, including but in no means limited to:
- anti-surface warfare (ASuW)
- anti-submarine warfare (ASW)
- mine countermeasures (MCM)
It is in the realm of stealth that Visby-class corvette really comes to the fore. Designed in accordance with Saab’s stealth philosophy, taking an integrated design approach to signature reduction. Visby-class corvette leads the world in naval stealth reduction across the full signature spectrum, including radar, infrared, acoustic and magnetic design. Saab has more than 75 years’ of experience in R&D focused on naval stealth reduction.
The vessel is equipped with a combined diesel or gas (CODOG) turbine arrangement for high speeds and two diesel engines for low-speed. The engines are connected to two gearboxes, driving two waterjet propulsors. The diesels sustain the vessel at 15 knots, while the turbines kick in when she has to do 35 knots or better.
Combat advantages of the Visby-class corvette are higher speed for the same power as conventional metal ship of the same dimensions, as well as greater maneuverability and shallower draught – both important tactical considerations in littoral waters.
The 100% all-composite carbon fibre hull
The hull and superstructure is made of the, in comparison, very light material all-composite carbon-fibre, giving the ship a number of significant advantages.
- Payload and displacement
The all-composite carbon fibre sandwich hull gives the Visby-class corvette a lower weight - 650 ton - than a steel ship of the same size would have. Thus the Visby-class corvette has a greater payload capacity.
At the same the carbon-fibre means that the Visby-class corvette has at least a 50% reduction in displacement compared with a steel ship.
- Tough and robust
Even though the hull and superstructure is lighter than steel, it is still comparable for fire resistance and ballistic properties, and superior to steel for vulnerability to blast and underwater explosions.
- Life cycle cost
In terms of life cycle costs, the carbon-fibre composite is entirely superior to steel and aluminium for fatigue. The superior corrosion resistance reduces the platform lifecycle costs even further.
In 2020, Saab together with Swedish Defence Materiel Organisation (FMV) and Swedish Armed Forces conducted the first firings from a corvette and a submarine at sea ranges outside Karlskrona, on Sweden’s east coast in the Baltic Sea.
The Visby-class corvette is equipped with Saab Lightweight Torpedos, more information about the torpedo is to be found here.