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Damen Shipyards Wins Tender to Supply High-Performance Support Vessel for Royal Navy’s NavyX Innovation Team

Issue 115 - August 2022

In a ceremony held at Her Majesty’s Naval Base (HMNB) Portsmouth on 29th July, the UK’s Royal Navy ‘NavyX’ innovation team took delivery of a modified Damen Fast Crew Supplier (FCS) 4008. Named XV Patrick Blackett after a distinguished naval officer and scientist, the 42-meter, high-speed vessel will have a crew of five and will be used as a trial ship, supporting innovation and experimentation with novel technologies.

NavyX, the Royal Navy’s innovation, autonomy, and lethality accelerator, which has been established to rapidly develop test, and trial cutting-edge equipment, ran an open tender process which resulted in an order being placed with Damen Shipyards in the Netherlands earlier this year for the delivery of an FCS 4008. The XV Patrick Blackett will be used as a platform for the assessment of a wide variety of equipment. Its 140 square meters of deck space provides a large, unobstructed area for UAVs, AUVs, and other cutting-edge technology. The extensive internal area that would normally have seating for up to 100 personnel is being converted into an operations center and a meeting room. Four caterpillar engines will give it a top speed of more than 20 knots.