Canadian frigates getting shipboard electronic countermeasures upgrades

Royal Canadian Navy’s Halifax-class frigates are set to benefit from improved shipboard electronic countermeasures systems under a contract announced by the Canadian defense minister on August 17.

Illustration: Royal Canadian Navy file photo of Halifax-class frigate HMCS Montreal.

According to defense minister Harjit S. Sajjan, the government of Canada has awarded Lockheed Martin Canada a CAD$94.2 million contract to maintain and overhaul the Reprogrammable Advance Multimode Shipboard Electronic Countermeasures System (RAMSES).

This countermeasure upgrade contract follows a similar one, awarded in June this year, for the installation of Multi Ammunition Softkill System (MASS) automated decoys which will provide the frigates with 360° protection against anti-ship missiles.

RAMSES is an electronic attack system that protects the modernized Halifax-class frigates against radio frequency guided missiles. It employs jamming signals to track and distract anti-ship missiles from hitting the ship. MASS is an integral part of the anti-ship missile defense suite.

It is a firing system used to launch decoys to project vessels against anti-ship missiles guided by radio frequency, laser and infrared seekers.

Through the contract, key parts of RAMSES will undergo a technology refresh. The contract also secures repair, overhaul, engineering changes, and ongoing support services. This work will ensure the system remains relevant and capable for the life of the Halifax-class frigates.

“These investments in our Royal Canadian Navy will provide our women and men in uniform with what they need for successful missions, and deliver jobs, both here in British Columbia and across Canada for years to come,” defense minister Harjit S. Sajjan said.