The program for three frigates (plus one as option) for the Hellenic Navy was signed on 24 March 2022. According to Naval Group, the FDI HN will quickly and sustainably enhance the capabilities of the Hellenic Navy’s surface fleet as they will be delivered in a very short timeframe, starting in 2025 for the first two units and in 2026 for the third one.
Naval News had the chance to ask a few questions to Commodore Theocharis Chatzopoulos, the Commanding Officer of the Hellenic Navy Detachment in Lorient.
Naval News: What is your role and the role of your crew here at the shipyard ?
Commodore Theocharis Chatzopoulos: The mission and tasks of the Hellenic Navy’s Detachment in Lorient is to coordinate all required actions in relation to the proper implementation of the relevant Contract and to monitor the shipbuilding process and progress.
Naval News: How important will the FDI be for the Hellenic Navy ?
Commodore Theocharis Chatzopoulos: FDI’s insertion in the Hellenic Fleet will be a pivotal point towards rejuvenating required capacities to address the security challenges of the coming decades in our Area of Interest.
These powerful combatants will dominate the Aegean Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean flying proudly the Greek Flag.
Naval News: How is the level of cooperation between the Hellenic Navy and the French Navy and industry, and is the cooperation satisfactory
Commodore Theocharis Chatzopoulos: The cooperation of the Hellenic Navy and Industry in the context of FDI program is just starting to take place, so all I can say at this point is that there are promising signs of a smooth and productive collaboration. I am looking forward to maintain and even improve current level of cooperation all the way along, until the delivery of all vessels within the contractual dates and within their contractual specifications.
Hellenic and French Navy cooperation has gained a new momentum within the recently established strategic cooperation framework between the two countries. In that context it is a multidimensional one, expanding beyond the FDI program on various levels and fields: strategic to tactical, operations and exercises, training and education, logistics to name only a few.
Naval News recently had an exclusive access to the Naval Group shipyard in Lorient and could see the first blocks of the FDI HN. Here is our video coverage:
Technical specifications of the FDI HN
- Displacement: 4,500 tons
- Length: 122 meters
- Beam: 18 metres
- Maximum speed: 27 knots
- operational availability: 3,500 hours per year
- aviation facility: 10 ton-class helicopter, VTOL unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)
The main weapon systems of the FDI HN are:
- 32 Aster missiles developed by MBDA
- 8 Exocet MM40 B3C missiles developed by MBDA
- RAM missiles
- MU 90 torpedoes developed by Naval Group
- 76 mm gun
- 4 torpedo tubes
- CANTO counter measures developed by Naval Group