22 Januari 2019

Meet the Navy’s New ‘Mothership’ that Fights with Unmanned Drones and Vessels

22 Januari 2019

The multi-role combat vessel will act as a "mothership" for unmanned systems (image : Mediacorp)

SINGAPORE: Not long ago, a warship’s superiority was defined by how powerful the guns on its deck were. Then, as weapons evolved, how far its missiles could go.

Now, with wars increasingly being fought hundreds of kilometres apart, it has become a case of spotting the enemy before it spots you.

“We are reaching a stage where who sees first, who sees fastest, actually wins,” Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) head of naval operations Cheong Kwok Chien told Channel NewsAsia in an exclusive interview on Saturday (Jun 30).

And so the RSN saw an opportunity for change.

The Victory-class missile corvettes, for over two decades the “backbone” of the RSN’s strike capabilities, are entering their twilight years. They will hit the end of their operational life in 2025.

Enter the multi-role combat vessel (MRCV), a type of “mothership” that will work in tandem with unmanned machines to see farther and respond quicker. These mission-configurable warships will be introduced after 2020.

“If we have certain areas we want to watch closely, we can be triggered early to respond,” Rear-Admiral (RADM) Cheong said. “These ships allow us to put eyes forward.”

Multi Role Combat Vessel (image : CNA)

These “eyes” are actually a network of unmanned drones and vessels that respectively carry cameras and weapons.

“The suite of weapons and sensors that can spread itself over a large area effectively turns the ship from being a point source to an area type of umbrella capability,” RADM Cheong added.

A typical strike package will possibly comprise a pair of MRCVs that each carries three unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), so there’s one in the air at all times, and two unmanned surface vessels.

But the RSN has not laid down specific configurations. There are physical limits to how much the MRCV can carry, and then there’s the cost factor of buying too many unmanned systems.

“Technology is allowing unmanned systems to get smaller, and it helps,” RADM Cheong said. “But there are physical limits to size because out there the wind is quite strong, so you can’t fly a typical hobbyist drone.”

Still, he added that the MRCV will allow the RSN to “bring a CCTV out to sea”. “If you have a whole network of eyes and shooters, you really expand the effective influence of the vessel.”

Victory class corvettes will be replaced by MRCV (photo : RSN)


While current UAVs can extend a ship’s field of vision by 100km because of their range, RADM Cheong said it’s likely that those on the MRCV can go farther.

“In the future, this range will increase because the control capabilities will improve,” he added. “It’s not very far-fetched to say that easily the ship will have awareness of maybe 150km around it.”

The high-definition capability of the UAV’s camera also adds a whole new dimension to surveillance, far beyond beeping blips on traditional radars. “You can see the colour of the hair of the guy you’re looking at 150km away; that’s possible,” RADM Cheong said.

Joint Multi Mission Ship (image : CNA)

It doesn’t stop there. The RSN wants to hear and recognise him as well.

“The other breakthrough that we will go for is to be able to see different dimensions,” he added. “If you put together facial recognition, voice recognition and sense recognition, not many people can run away from that.”

With information from multiple UAVs and cameras, as well as intelligence from other assets, the RSN intends to put it all together on a single screen. 

“More than flying cameras around, it’s quite important for us to stitch together the picture and make sense of it fast,” RADM Cheong said. “No point staring out at beautiful scenery without knowing what you’re looking for.”

“This technology is not earth-shattering,” he continued. “It just takes deliberate effort to make it happen.”

Beyond its superior strike and surveillance capabilities, the MRCV is also more versatile and can go farther than the missile corvette, which was purpose-built for its warfighting capabilities.

For example, the MRCV can undertake counter-terrorism as well as humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) missions, because it can carry mission-specific cargo like counter-terrorism forces and medical aid.

Endurance class LST will be replaced by JMMS (photo : Sing Mindef)


But the RSN’s ship of choice when it comes to HADR is the landing ship tank (LST), which has been deployed at several humanitarian assistance operations including the Aceh tsunami in 2004.

This is because the 141m-long, 6,000-tonne LST is the RSN’s largest ship, with the capacity to carry up to 18 tanks, 20 vehicles and bulk cargo. It also has two 25-foot deck cranes for loading and unloading of cargo.

But the RSN wants to go bigger.

“What we have learnt from a lot of disaster relief missions is that our first wave of aid and supplies that go in really make the difference,” RADM Cheong said. “It’s not about building a conveyor belt, the first guy who reaches there, the first box that you open must save lives. That’s why we need to carry more.”

With that, the RSN will replace the LST with a larger joint multi mission ship (JMMS) that can carry twice the amount of cargo and discharge it better. The JMMS will also be introduced after 2020.

“When you reach the area, you must always remember that there’s no beautiful port for you to come alongside and put the staircase down,” he added. “So, the design of the ship is also how you can bring it to an area with no access.”

A future ready RSN Ship (image : RSN)

This extra space and accessibility are also important during counter-piracy operations. In the Gulf of Aden, Singapore regularly deploys the LST for international anti-piracy patrols.

To that end, the JMMS will be able to carry more and bigger boats to transport boarding teams that repel pirates and keep merchant ships safe.

“When the sea is rough, and the boat you carry is so small, you can’t launch your boys and say please carry on,” said RADM Cheong, who has led counter-piracy operations at the Gulf of Aden.

“Even for a big ship which can carry three to four boats, it’s never enough. It’s always the feeling that you want to do more than what you have brought along.”

Besides boats, the JMMS can also carry larger UAVs and unmanned vessels to do surveillance and fend off pirates. Its longer flight deck also means it can carry multiple helicopters, as opposed to the LST which could only carry two.

As RADM Cheong concluded: “It’s more than just a pick-up lorry.”

Singapore Navy Fleet (image : CNA)


Along with the Type 218SG submarine, RADM Cheong said the RSN’s three new vessels bode well for Singapore’s future.

“We have built in a confidence and belief in the younger generation to see that with each generation, we modernise the Navy to make it better and sharper,” he said. 

Each acquisition is “very deliberate”, he added, with a lot of hard work going into designing, operating and maximising it. “We are always maximising limited resources, and we never back off from any challenge.”


50 komentar:

  1. Kobongan..saking panasnya ....lumayan anget tomboh ra iso kelon

  2. kapal induk drone...waw

  3. Tldm sudah harus koleksi Arsenal iniπŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

  4. Makin sangar Sing..
    Makin yakin pertahanin Batu Poteh dan Tuas Strait kalau udah begini sih... ngeraaaayyy πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‰

  5. Glek..(speechless) 😯

    Baru liat grafis dah bikin keder, soalnya bakal terwujud..😁

    Truly Deterrence effect

  6. Ga ada yang ngarep hibahan neeh..?
    Tuu yang mo pangsiun barang gahar semua..😁😁

    KS, korvet, LPD...semua full spek, low odometer..πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

  7. This article was published last year alrdy.??

  8. Sekali Singapura buat rencana, selalu mendetail dan pasti terwujud, pilihannya bagus-bagus. Namun, apabila Malaysia buat rencana, ia tanpa ragu memilih Tejas, dan rencana pengembangan alutsista tenteranya selalu magkrak dan anggarannya Songlap, belum lagi selalu dirasuah bersama dari atas sampai bawah, kalah jauh dengan Singapura yang dulu cuma daerah "buangan".

    1. Tejas is belong to Malon...Omaegot,Omaegot

    2. Godverdomseh....apa kowe orang bilang, kepalane malon belong πŸ™†

      Nei, nei, nei...besok lagi kowe orang tidak boleh begitu sama tetangga πŸ™…πŸ™…πŸ™…


    1. Jadi ente takut?

      Generasi apaan lu, cemen.

    2. Bukan masalah sama sekali, lebih baik kita buat rencana bagaimana city-state ini bisa menguntungkan kita.

    3. Baru liat grafis gitu aja dah kuatir, gimana mo lawan negara lebih gede.

      Lemah tuh amat mental.

    4. @oi, baca tuh komen berkelasnya mas AR..πŸ‘

    5. Tepatnya lemah syahwat mase...mulane ringut wae πŸ˜‚

    6. kami mental petarung.. tapi tanpa strategi yang matang semangat spirit mental bertarung pun akan luntur, taktik dan strategi negara singaporno mengadop strategi negara Zionis Israel dengan melakukan perang urat syaraf (psy war) untuk mengukuhkan hegemoninya.. Perang urat syaraf ini dilakukan dengan berbagai model dan cara. salah satunya: dengan menunjukkan (show) kekuatan militer, dimulai dari peralatan yang canggih dan serba terbaru... SUDAH BARANG TENTU SINGAPORNO MENUNJUKKAN HEGEMONINYA DI KAWASAN ASIA TENGGARA...

    7. Yg penting klo berani senggol Yo bacok ae ngono kok repot

    8. hegemoni apaan? manpower aja minim? wajib militer pun banyak yg kelojotan gak tahan teriknya matahari tropis, langsung nyari ruangan ber Ac? lebih baik menguntungkan satu sama lain dgn investasi, toh mereka invest disini juga pake pekerja kita daripada yg dari sono noh tukang sapu pun dibawa.

      mau aja diadu malon yg sakit hati.

  10. udah boleh lahh buat kapal komando utk misi2 joint opearation yg "minimalis'. lengkapi dengan 76mm ato 57mm mk3 bofors. ada fire control radar, punya radar surveillance medium sperti thales smart s, MRR 3d, SPS 550 korea, dll plus sat com yg terintegrasi. ditambah kepampuan oprasi medis sehingga mampu menjadi tumpuan oprasi dan gap filler radar bagi wilayah2 yg tak tercover radar TNI

  11. tapi singapura takut jerebu....2 hari kena jerebu langsung bengek....gak bisa lari kemana2

  12. Again, Idiot Indons are Jealous of Singapore.Later they will say that they are more powerful than Singapore.


    1. Ofcoure Singapore more powerfull than noob malaydogsial.. in Globalfirepower, a website which assesses the military strengths of countries, in ‘2018 indonesian best 15 Military Strength Ranking in the world and top in asean country.. and malaydogsial only joke compare even laos mynmar and philipina

      Kih kih kih

  13. As far as we know that both singapore and KL are both educated Nd civilized nation and with this, dispute in Air was able to provide solution and currently both side are on talk.

    How about Idiot Indons????

    Talk here

    Talk their

    Talk like a girl

    Without reality


    1. This is reality

      The Best Proof That Malays Are Lazy, Dishonest & Know No Shame?

      Fortunately, such admission – that Malays are lazy, dishonest and lack of integrity – came from the Godfather Mahathir’s mouth. Can you imagine what will happen if such statement comes from Lim Guan Eng or Anwar Ibrahim’s mouth? It seems the problems of laziness, dishonest and probably corruption have spread its tentacles to even primary school


      Poor stupid malaydogsial

      Kih kih kih

  14. Breaking News!

    Indons are Jealous of Singapore and they cant accept that Singapore is more powerful than their Idiot government. IDIOT INDONS will also purchase 100 units of F-35 from Americans and this time they request US to install their own made TONG-TONG 400HP Piston Type Engine.


    1. Yes malaydogsial always jealous because singapore take batu puteh island from noob malaydogsial.. in johor strait incident malaydogsial noop army always run from singapore navy..

      All asean nation always make progress with new military asets and procument singapore buy F-35, indonesian development KFX buy SU35 and F-16 viper.. laos, mynmar, veitnam, philipine already buy new fighter.. but sadly only poor malaydogsial still no progres.. sukhoi only 4 can Fly and old asets cant fly because no sparepart..

      Kih kih kih

  15. Homo bencong transgender Ugly Plastic Tong tong malon Gila...wkwkwkwkwkwkwk

  16. Bagaimana dgn yg mengaku macan Asia Dari semenanjung? Kolaps setengah pingsan ekonominya saat ini, tak akan ada belanja senjata. Hutang negara berlimpah, Takda wang, recovery ekonomi lambat, banyak mimpi di siang bolong, rakyat Malon mudah di gondolin πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

  17. Saat ini Malon cuma jadi penonton yg setia melihat negara sekawasan pada pada planing dan merealisasi belanja persenjataan dan pelatihan angkatan bersenjatanya. Sedangkan Malon staf tade kemajuan.

  18. When you compared Singapore Forces to Idiot Indons???

    Rate 1 to 10 and q0 is more powerful

    SINGAPORE = 10
    IDIOT INDONS = 1.5





    1. Compared in all asean nation, stupid malaydogsial army only joke.. no achivement lack of skill and asets only smart raped and robed

      Malaysial defence assets worst in Southeast Asia, says Mat Sabu minister of defence malaydogsial

      Malaysial land, naval and air defence assets are ranked the lowest among all Southeast Asian countries, says Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu.

      “In terms of our navy, air force and others in Southeast Asia, we are at the bottom.

      “Vietnam is far ahead, Indonesia is on top while Malaysial is the lowest.

      “It is embarrassing right now for us

      However, it remains unknown for now as to whether Mohamad was referring to the quality of the assets, quantity or service level.

      Globalfirepower, a website which assesses the military strengths of countries, in its ‘2018 Military Strength Ranking’ very low compare nine countries in Southeast Asia, even Philippines, Singapore, Cambodia and Laos.


      Kih kih kih

  19. Laju mana ATM dgn singapura army?

  20. ternyata singapo jg blom terluw lama pasang thales STIR 1.2 EO mk2, hmmn artinya slama lbh 10 taon ffbnw donk, bner gak sich. moga2 om ben bs ngejelasin haha!πŸ˜†πŸ˜†πŸ˜†

    RSN to Fit Final Formidable-Class Frigate with Thales Fire-Control Radar

    sm sperti LMS kelas independence vlsnye blom ada, trus senjata utama pake lungsuran, gpp sich masi sip, dibanding yg pake balon 3 bijik koneng warnanya tuw haha!πŸ€—πŸ€—πŸ€—

  21. JOINT MULTI MISSION SHIP(JMMS) proyek mnarik, cuman pengen tau aje, ini kapal2 mao parkir dimenong coba haha!πŸ˜‹πŸ˜‹πŸ˜‹

  22. penguatan armada singapo ini, harusnya lampu merah buat tetangga kesayangan lho, gimana enggak kwatir.
    insiden kemarin aja al negerinya om ben uda ngluarin heli & kapal angkatan lautnya. pdhl tetangga kesayangan cuman usil pasang bodi pake kapal non kombatan haha!🀣🀣🀣

    namun kalo tetangga kesayangan gak nurunin kapal kombatannya, bisa ngundang curiga tuch, antara tak siyap tempur ama ada dech..haha!😜😜😜

  23. https://sg.news.yahoo.com/indonesia-floods-landslides-death-toll-climbs-59-033821774.html

    Lagi BALA dan Musibah untuk negara Poor Indon!

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