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Type 45 ("D" Class) Destroyer
Daring Class

Part 3


HMS Daring being readied for sea trials in June 2007. The components of her PAAMS air defence system can be seen to advantage. (Source BAE Systems)

The main armament for the Type 45 ships will be the Principal Anti Air Missile System (PAAMS).  PAAMS provides the combat system to engage and destroy aircraft and sophisticated anti-ship missile targets threats both in defence of its own platform and others in its immediate area.  The system will be particularly optimised for operations in littoral regions around the shore.

The UK PAAMS variant consists of a number of elements:

  • PAAMS Command & Control;
  • SAMPSON Multi Function Radar (MFR) for surveillance and fire control; and
  • 48 silo Sylver Vertical Launch System (VLS) capable of deploying any combination of the following two missile types:-
  • Aster 15 - for Self Defence use and against Local Area Defence Threats;
  • Aster 30 -for Self Defence, Local Area Defence and Area Defence.

Closely associated, but not officially part of PAAMS is the:

  • S1850M Long-Range Radar (LRR) long range air surveillance radar

Full Scale Engineering Development and Initial Production of PAAMS was agreed by France, Italy and the United Kingdom in August 1999 and qualification is expected between 2004 and 2006.  Three PAAMS systems were ordered in 2000 with 200 Aster 15 and 30 Naval missiles, to equip HMS Daring, a French Forbin class Horizon frigate and an Italian Bergamini class Horizon frigate. Seven other PAAMS systems were ordered during 2003 for five more Type 45 destroyers, another French Forbin and another Italian Bergamini, with between 400 and 500 additional Aster 15 and 30 Naval missiles.

Much more information about PAAMS can be found on the webpage here.


Propulsion and Engineering

It is believed three propulsion plants for the Type 45 destroyer were originally considered - Full Electric Propulsion (FEP) which is similar to an American concept called Integrated Power Systems (IPS), a BAE Systems' Combined Gas and Electric (COGAL) proposal and a developed Type 23 Combined Diesel Electric or Gas (CODLOG) plant.  After comparative studies FEP became the preferred choice with COGAL well-considered but insufficiently advanced while CODLOG also ran.

Two alternative gas turbine prime movers were also considered for the Type 45, the simple cycle GE LM2500 and the intercooled and recuperated (ICR) Northrop Grumman/Rolls-Royce WR-21.  The MoD had to make a difficult choice between the attractively priced and well proven LM2500, and the new but unproven and higher cost WR-21 with its lower specific fuel consumption and claimed higher power density.  The two machines have similar footprints but the WR-21's ICR equipment increases its height to more than one deck.   The WR-21 is also bulkier and heavier than the LM2500, its enclosure has a volume of 86.55m3 against the 68.69m3 of the LM2500, while the comparative dry weights are 49,693kg against 22,000kg respectively.  The big advantage the WR-21 has over the LM25000 is that the intercooled and recuperated units recycle hot exhaust gases, reducing the IR signature and providing more uniform fuel consumption at either high or low power.  The WR-21 is more fuel efficient than simple cycle gas turbines across its entire power range, although the maximum 30% economy is only achieved at the bottom of the power range and is reduced to about quarter of that at full power - albeit that warships seldom operate at top speed. 

Aft engine room layout

It was announced on 1 November 2000 that the Type 45 will use an Integrated Electric Propulsion (IEP) system with the advanced WR-21 gas turbines. The Type 45's power and propulsion system will simultaneously provide the means to propel the ship and power all electrically driven equipment.  The system will be a development of that used in the Albion Class LPD's, although still less sophisticated than the Integrated Full Electric Propulsion (IFEP) system planned for the Future Surface Combatant and Future Aircraft Carrier.  The Type 45's will have a two unit twin shaft configuration, each unit having a Rolls Royce/Northrop Grumman WR-21 ICR gas turbine generator unit in the forward engineroom and a 20MW electric induction motor in the aft engineroom.

It was further announced by the Type 45 Prime Contractor Office on 14 March 2001 that Northrop Grumman Marine Systems and Rolls Royce plc, supported by DCN International, had been awarded an £84 million contract for the supply of WR-21 inter-cooled and recuperated (ICR) gas turbines for six ships.  The order includes the gas turbines, combined gas turbine and alternator baseplate, engine controller and acoustic enclosure. The order also places the consortium in a prime position to bid for a similar US Navy requirement for the DD-21 programme.

The fuel-efficient WR-21 ICR marine gas turbine is based upon Rolls Royce's Trent family of commercial aircraft engines, and is the culmination of a nine-year, £300 million development programme funded by the US, British and French navies.  Although rated at 25.2MW the units for the Type 45 will be down-rated to deliver 21.5MW, they will be integrated with Alstom manufactured alternators, and with the two 2MW Wartsila diesel generator sets will occupy the forward engine room compartment.

Item Specification Requirement
Rated Power 26,400 bhp +10%
Specific Fuel Consumption (SFC) .360 lbs/hp-hr @ 100% power
.378 lbs/hp-hr @ 30% power
Size 315 x 104 x 190 inches
(800cm x 264 x 483 cm)
Weight 120,000 lbs (54,432kg)
Reliability 1000 hours MTBF
Life 40 Years
Modularity Individual replacement of major subassemblies
Major Component Removal Through ship intake
Maintainability Serviceable on board ship
Crew Preventive Maintenance (Scheduled) 4.5 hours/week
Crew Maintenance (Scheduled & Unscheduled) 6.75 hours/week

Table - Primary WR-21 Performance and Maintenance Specification Requirements

 wr-21.jpg (11873 bytes)
Cutaway diagram of a WR-21

Gas flow in a WR-21

The prototype 20MW electric motor, manufactured by Alstom and capable of 150 revs/min.

It was also announced on 1 November 2000 ALSTOM Power Conversion had been selected to supply the remainder of the integrated electric power/propulsion system architecture, with the order for the equipment for an initial three ships expected to be worth around £40 million. The scope of supply includes 20MW advanced induction motors, commercially-based pulse width modulated converter drives with three five-channel banks, 21MW alternators, 2MW diesel generators, ships service transformers, and the power system controls. Most of the equipment will be in the aft engine room compartment, which is separated by another compartment to reduce vulnerability from battle damage. The prime units in the aft compartment will be two advanced induction motors each generating 20MW with a pulse width modulated converter drive with three five-channel banks. ALSTOM will also be providing the high voltage switchboard, ship services transformer, dynamic breaking resistor and HY/LV harmonic filters.


t45-engineering.gif (22193 bytes)
The planned engineering installation of the Type 45

The Type 45 will have the first ever IEP installation in a large warship, but both the Defence Procurement Agency (DPA) and prime contractors BAE Systems believe that it is not a high risk solution.  They point out that it is based upon the experience gained by the US Navy through its IEP test site in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, which has been running for about a decade.

The system promises to provide greater fuel efficiency and, by removing the need for direct drives, greater flexibility, including the ability to use one prime mover to provide both hotel and propulsion services operating both shafts rather than leaving one trailing.

Litton Marine Systems and Rockwell Automation will provide the platform management system. It will be based upon programmable logic controllers, which reduce costs because they use the same technology as that in the automotive industry.

Linked by a triple redundant fibre optic cable system the controllers can be distributed around the ship in an open architecture system, which not only helps to provide obsolescence management but also provides more efficient use of space by avoiding the need for bulky cabinets.

It is clear that IEP is not a panacea, however.  There are disadvantages with IEP and the WR-21 such as the higher initial procurement cost, bulky ICR equipment, and the heavy and bulky electrical equipment.  While it certainly saves mass and space through the removal of bulky transmission systems it does not lead to the radical redistribution of ship space which some might have thought, largely due to the requirement for the big (90 tonne) 20MW induction motors which require considerable space amidships.  However, the modular propulsion system is simple to maintain and there is no need for bulky gears to interface with drive shafts for they feed by electric cable direct to the propellers, allowing for greater flexibility in gas turbine location and the ship layout.  Overall the RN anticipates that adopting IEP and the WR-21 for the Type 45 will result in massive benefits when in service, particularly in terms of reduced through life costs (due to the reduced fuel and maintenance costs) and improved range/endurance, both very important considerations to the RN. 

Unfortunately the gradual increase in the size and displacement of the Type 45 design has resulted in a steady drop in the maximum speed and range that can be expected with the selected machinery.  With a typical operational displacement of 7500 tonnes now probable, the ships will be unable to achieve much over 27kts, and the range has dropped from an originally hoped for 10,000 nm to about 7,000 nm.  At one stage it seemed possible that later units would be fitted with more powerful machinery and increased bunkerage, that now (2005) seems very improbable.

The first set of two WR-21 GTA's were installed in HMS Daring (a rather one of her blocks) in August 2004.


A six berth cabin (Source: BAE Systems)

Accommodation and Habitability

Accommodation on the Type 45 will be exceptionally luxurious compared with the preceding Type 42 class.  Instead of large mess decks, Junior Rates will be in six berth cabins.  Senior rates will have  one or two berth cabins and all officers will have single cabins apart from officers under training.  All 94 cabins will be unisex, giving 'Drafty' great flexibility on the ratio of male and female crew members. 

The Senior Rates space will be two compartments seating 58, while the  Wardroom Anteroom will have space for 30 with seating provided both for the officers and for entertaining visitors to the ship. 

The ship will have a dedicated fitness centre, alternatively crew can keep fit by running round the flight deck where 16 laps are equivalent to one mile.

The ships complement will be around 190 crew, but there will be accommodation for up to 235.  The excess accommodation for about 45 personnel allows for the transport of specialist teams and their equipment to carry out a variety of missions - whether military, para-military or disaster relief.   In particular, facilities will be provided for a 30 strong (60 in austere conditions) Royal Marine or Special Forces detachment, complete with their weapons, equipment and boats. 


It is expected that the Type 45's will be subject to the RN's new TOPMAST manning structure.  TOPMAST will add approximately 30% to the ships complement in order to ensure that it ship maintains Operational Capability with a full crew even when frequently deployed on operations, while still meeting Harmony targets and crew leave periods.  With TOPMAST it is hoped that the Type 45's will average over 255 days availability a year.



The Type 45 destroyers will be based at HM Naval Base Portsmouth.


Additional Comments

The initial design of the Type 45 is clearly optimised for air warfare and there is deliberately considerable potential and opportunity to add other capabilities and fit a wider range of missile types.  Due largely to financial constraints it's likely that the early ships will be completed without Harpoon SSM's, Stingray torpedoes, ILMS, or a capability to operate the Merlin helicopter.  However the potential to fit them if needed will be there, and their absence reflects a realistic prioritisation of the available funding.

It seems rather unfortunate that the  French/Italian 'Sylver' PAAMS launcher was selected for the first batch of Type 45's over the Lockheed-Martin VLS-41 launcher.  Sylver is tailored only for the anti-air 'Aster' missile while the VLS-41 missile launcher can accommodate missiles fulfilling a number of roles—tactical ballistic missile defence, land-attack (including Tomahawk), anti-surface ship and anti-submarine, as well as anti-air warfare.   Indeed, in the light of events over the last 5 years in Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq, the RN is fortunate to have some of its SSN's fitted with Tomahawk land-attack missiles (TLAM), but this is an expensive way of deploying a relatively limited number of land-attack missiles, and it now seems particularly relevant to add such a capability to the Type 45.

Demonstration of the load capacity of the different types of Mk.41 VLS cells.

However, overall, the specification of the Type 45 destroyer represents a significant advance over equivalent role ships in other European navies.  For example, the combination of the advanced Sampson multi-function radar with its great range of visibility and discrimination with the super agile Aster missiles, delivers a superior performance to any of the current continental European programmes - such as the Dutch (LCF), Spanish (F-100) and German (F-124) destroyers - which are now entering service equipped with the latest American AEGIS and Standard SM-2 missile systems.  The Type 45 will also have a greater range and endurance than any of these designs, thanks partly to its advanced Integrated Electric Propulsion system.  The Type 45 will initially have a much smaller missile battery than existing AEGIS/Standard equipped American (Arleigh Burke), Japanese (Kongo) destroyers, and the planned South Korean (KDX-3) destroyers, but the potential to increase the number VLS cells from 48 to 64 on the Type 45 does improve the situation.  The Type 45 is also sometimes compared with the new DD(X) (formally DD-21) land attack destroyer being developed United States Navy, which is due to enter service from 2010, only three years after the first Type 45.  However the role of the two ships will be so different that any comparison is really rather pointless until the proposed AAW cruiser variant of the DD(X) finally emerges, and that will be about a decade after HMS Daring enters service.

Modern western air warfare destroyers.
 From top to bottom:  USN DDG-51 "Arleigh Burke" Class, Flight IIA; Flight I;  RN Type 45 "D" Class;
French Horizon "Forbin" Class;  Dutch "De Zeven Provincien" Class; Spanish "F100" Class.
 Source: Mihoshi (4/2003)

Undoubtedly, if the RN had the leisure of more time it would make significant changes to the Type 45 design.  However, Cdre Philip Greenish, the Director of Equipment Capability for above-water programmes has said that the Type 45 is now too far ahead for any major innovations to be included.  He stated: "I accept that if we were to start today on Type 45 we wouldn't do it this way in its entirety but we have historical constraints on us.  We urgently need to replace older ships as they approach the end of their lives and we have to crack on."  

Names and Pennant Numbers

It was announced in July 2000 that lead ship would be called  HMS Daring and the second ship HMS Dauntless.  It was announced in March 2001 that the third ship was to named HMS Diamond.   It was announced on 18 February 2002 that the next three ships would be called HMS Dragon, HMS Defender and HMS Duncan.

The class has been officially designated the D-Class.  However, it's also been suggested by a senior RN admiral that "Town" names might be used for Type 45's, so it's just possible that the two Batch 2 units may bear names such as London and Birmingham, if only for Public Relations reasons.

Although the pennant numbers for the Batch 1 Type 45's have probably been allocated by now, they have not been publicly announced.  But the pennant numbers "D32" and "D33" have appeared on the hull in a few artists illustrations of the Type 45 design, and some sources seem to have used this as the basis for an assumed pennant numbering sequence starting from D32.  This assumption may well become self fulfilling!


In 2004, BAE Systems published an unusually complete list of suppliers chosen for the Type 45 project.  For Interest I include it here.

The supply of systems and equipments has been categorised into four categories:

A Class - These are the Combat System and Power Systems elements
B Class - These are the Platform equipments that require the suppliers' input to the platform design
C Class - These are the Platform equipments that are either catalogue or build-to-print items.
D Class - These are the Platform equipments that include significant supplier labour at the shipbuilder's site within the scope of supply (e.g painting, cleaning of the ship during trials,…etc)

The A and B Class items are being procured by the PCO and the C and D Class by the shipbuilder - BAE Systems Naval Ships.


  • Prime Contractor for the Type 45 programme.

Vosper Thornycroft

  • Strategic partner for the build and fitting of sections of each ship.

BAE SYSTEMS (Naval Ships)

  • Strategic partner for the build and fitting of sections of each ship as well as the assembly of all ships in the Class.

BAE SYSTEMS (Customer Solutions & Support)

  • Strategic partner for the Maritime Integration Support Centre (MISC)


  • Strategic partner for major elements of the combat system.


  • Strategic partner for the PAAMS Command and Control System .

Aerospatiale Matra Missiles
Site 1 - EUROSAM
Site 2 - EADS

  • Strategic partner for the Aster missile.

Rolls Royce

  • Strategic partner for the prime mover - WR21 Gas Turbine

Raytheon Systems Ltd

  • Strategic partner for the navigation system and elements of the integrated Bridge


EPP - 2 - Classification 'B'  Items

  CAM Group Description of Item / System / Equipment Supplier
1 Auxiliary Stabilizer & Steering ROLLS ROYCE
2 Auxiliary Propeller Shaftline System ROLLS ROYCE
3 Auxiliary Air Systems JP SAUER
4 Auxiliary High Pressure Air Receivers CHESTERFIELD
5 Auxiliary High Pressure Air Reducing Stations TRUFLO
6 Auxiliary Bilge Fluid Treatment Plant ALAN COBHAM
7 Auxiliary General Valves TRUFLO
8 Auxiliary Reverse Osmosis Plant and Chlorinator PALL ROCHEM
9 Auxiliary Fluid & Fuel Systems ALAN COBHAM
10 Auxiliary Firefighting Systems Wormald 
11 Auxiliary Sewage Treatment & Collection HAMWORTHY
12 Auxiliary Domestic Fresh Water Module RYECROFT
13 Auxiliary Fwd & Aft Exhaust Coolers WR DAVIS
14 Auxiliary Chilled Water System YORK
15 Auxiliary GT & DG Ups & Ins DARCHEM
16 Auxiliary HVAC YORK
17 Auxiliary HVAC Dampers York
18 Auxiliary AVCAT Fluid Systems FACET
19 Auxiliary Pumps WEIR
20 Electrical Emergency Generator G & M
21 Electrical Emergency Switchboard V. T. C. 
22 Electrical Electric Motor Starters V. T. C. 
23 Electrical CSDC's (Converted Supplies Distribution Centres) V. T. C. 
24 Electrical Transformers Units V. T. C. 
25 Electrical EDC's (Electrical Distribution Centres) V. T. C. 
26 Electrical Ship Services Switchboards (LV Switchboards 440V) V. T. C. 
27 Electrical Shore Connection Boxes V. T. C. 
28 Electrical Distribution Panels V. T. C. 
29 Electrical Light Fittings McGEOCH
30 Electrical Hull Preservation Systems SUBSPECTION
31 Electrical Fire & Flood THORN
32 Electrical Degaussing System ULTRA
33 Electrical Helicopter Start System ULTRA
35 SWSE Helicopter Landing STRACHAN & HENSHAW
36 SWSE Magazine Ammuntion Stowages Alstec
37 SWSE Air Weapons Magazine and Air Weapons Handling System ENTWISTLE
38 SWSE Flight Deck Landing Aids AGI
39 SWSE MCG Magazine Hoist RO DEFENCE
40 SWSE Main Hangar Closure ALJIO  ALUMINIUM
41 Outfitting Solid/Plastic Waste STRACHAN & HENSHAW
42 Outfitting Commissariat FALCON
43 Outfitting Modular Cabins NORWEST HOLST
44 Outfitting Temperature Controlled Storage, Cold & Cool Rooms & Refridgeration Machinery ERNEST WEST & BEYNON
45 Outfitting Hatches, Doors  Ansell Jones 
46 Outfitting Blast Doors Van Dam 
47 Outfitting Hoist for Ship Stores Handling ALSTEC
48 Outfitting Food Hoist KONE
49 Outfitting Window Wiper Control Units and Jet Sprays HECHEHMANN
50 Outfitting Bridge Windows TM UTTLEY
51 Outfitting RAS Movable Highpoints ALSTEC
52 Outfitting RAS Winches (Capstan) PELLEGRINI
53 Outfitting Capstans & Windlasses ROLLS ROYCE
54 Outfitting Boat Davits & Boat Bay Doors PELLEGRINI
55 Outfitting Accommodation Ladders Fassmer
56 Outfitting Tank & Draught Gauging System EUROGAUGE
57 Outfitting Awning VT
58 Outfitting RCS Screens (Transom etc.) Pellegrini
59 Structure Main & Intermediate Shaft Brackets Bonds 
60 Structure Helicopter Flight Deck Hold Down System (Link-plates) Indal

Combat System
FICS (Thales)
NAV (Raytheon)
RESM (Thales)
Sonar (Ultra)
FSE (AMS / Qinetic)
MISC (Qinetic / BAE CS&S)
IFF Equipment (Raytheon)
PTFS (Drumgrange)
SCG (MSI Defence Systems)
Trials Masts (Vosper Thorneycroft)
IFF Antenna (AMS)

Gas Turbines (Rolls Royce)
Electric Drive and Integration (Alstom)
PMS (Northrop Grumman Sperry Marine)
2 MW DG (Competed through Alstom)
20 MW Alternator (Competed through Alstom)
Steering (Rolls Royce)
Shaftline (Rolls Royce)
Stabilisers (Rolls Royce)

Type 45 Links

Note: Links open in new windows

BAE Systems - Type 45

Defence Procurement Agency  - Type 45 Project File

EuroSAM - Aster Missiles

Naval Technology Horizon CNGF (Type 45 Destroyer)

RAND Corporation - The Royal Navy's New-Generation Type-45 Destroyer: Acquisition Options and Implications

Royal Navy - Type 45 Air Defence Destroyer

Janes (The company's many publications form an excellent source of information on the Type 45 project)


 © 2004-13 Richard Beedall unless otherwise indicated.