Korea picks Rolls-Royce MT30 for FFX-III frigate

The Rolls-Royce MT30 marine gas turbine has been selected for the Republic of Korea Navy’s (RoKN) FFX Batch III frigate, known as the Ulsan-class frigate.

The 3,500-ton ship will be built by South Korean shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI).

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The newbuild is expected to be delivered in late 2024.

Rolls-Royce has already worked with the RoKN to introduce a hybrid propulsion system arrangement for all eight ships in the Daegu-class FFX Batch II frigate programme – each powered by a single MT30 gas turbine and electric propulsion motors powered by four Rolls-Royce MTU diesel generators per ship.

The use of the MT30 across the Batch II and Batch III frigates will deliver commonality benefits to the navy, such as spare parts, support infrastructure and training, according to Rolls-Royce.

For FFX Batch III, the Ulsan-class frigate programme, Rolls-Royce will also supply Engine Health Management (EHM) capability with its MT30 marine gas turbine. Supporting leaner naval forces, EHM technology delivers through-life benefits, such as reduced manpower and maintenance costs, by enabling the collection of reliable engine data and analysis to maximise asset availability and optimise on-board maintenance.

As part of Rolls-Royce’s ongoing design collaboration with HHI for the specialised integrated gas turbine enclosure for MT30, HHI-EMD will continue to be responsible for the manufacture of this highly complex engineering enclosure and all ancillaries in-country, as well as continuing to provide in-service support.

“We are delighted that MT30 has once again been selected to power the latest batch of FFX frigates and we look forward to continuing our relationship with the Republic of Korea Navy and HHI,” Jay Lee (Jongyel Lee), Vice President of Business Development & Future Programmes, Defence – Naval, Korea, commented.

The MT30 gas turbine is already in service with several navies around the globe including the US Navy’s Freedom-class littoral combat ship and Zumwalt-class destroyers, the Republic of Korea’s Daegu-class frigates, the Royal Navy’s Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers and the Italian Navy’s new landing helicopter dock.

More recently, MT30 has been selected to power the Japanese Maritime Defence Force’s 30-FFM frigate and in single gas turbine CODLOG configuration for the Type 26 Global Combat Ship programmes for the Royal Navy, Royal Australian Navy and Royal Canadian Navy.