Second batch of German K130 ships making headway with first keel laying

German shipbuilder Lürssen is set to host a keel-laying ceremony for the first of a second batch of Germany Navy K130 (Braunschweig-class) corvettes at its Peene shipyard in Volgast on April 25.

The keel-laying for future FGS Köln comes two months after construction under the program got underway in February this year, and 19 months after a contract for the additional five ships was awarded.

“The new corvette construction project shows that we can also be fast,” German Navy Chief Vice Admiral Andreas Krause commented. “And we have to continue with this pace because we urgently need these ships to ease the burden on the rest of the fleet.”

The new K130 ships will be named Köln, Emden, Karlsruhe, Augsburg, and Lübeck. Köln is scheduled to start first sea trials in 2022.

All five ships, built under a €2.4bln contract from September 2017, are scheduled to be delivered to the navy by the ARGE K130 consortium by 2025. The shipbuilding consortium is composed of ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems, German Naval Yards Kiel and Lürssen Werft as prime contractor.

Aft and stern sections of the ships will be built in shipyards in Bremen and Volgast, and the ships will be assembled and fitted out at Blohm & Voss in Hamburg.

Another consortium, named FüWES K130 will deliver improved combat systems, and set up and deliver a test and training center in Wilhelmshaven.

Braunschweig-class corvettes were ordered because of the German Navy’s increased scope and tempo of operations.

The 90-meter ships are designed for operation in coastal waters, augmenting the capabilities of fast attack boats and frigates. They are equipped with two 27 mm Mauser MLG27 remote-controlled, fully-automatic cannons, and one OTO Melara 76 mm gun.

The corvettes also feature a helicopter landing deck and use the Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) – guided naval missile system for close-in defense against anti-ship missiles, aircraft, helicopters and surface threats.