15 June 2018

15 June 2018, Canberra – The ITS Alpino, a Fincantieri-built frigate has concluded its tour of the east coast of the United States. A true global, capable and proven warship, the ITS Alpino sailed to Norfolk, New York, Baltimore and Boston to enhance cooperation between the U.S and Italian navies and to underscore the potential benefits of the FREMM design.


Fincantieri is one of the world's largest shipbuilding groups and is participating in two of the world's major naval programs. It is tendering for Australia's SEA 5000 Future Frigates program and has also been awarded a $15m (USD) contract to evolve its FREMM-design into the next generation frigate the FFG(X).


Dario Deste, Chairman of Fincantieri Australia said that Fincantieri's participation in two of the largest naval programs in the world reinforces the superiority of the FREMM platform and its global leadership in the design and construction of the most technologically advanced vessels.


"The proposed FREMM design Fincantieri offers to the U.S Navy and the Royal Australian Navy is a new type of surface combatant that can deliver great combat capability for both navies. The FREMM is the only ship in both programs that have been proven in combat, making it a global powerful warship. It also means potentially better interoperability between the two navies when conducting important military exercises, for example. The FREMM is acknowledged as the leading ASW (Anti-Submarine Warfare) frigate today and is actively engaged in conflict situations," Mr Deste said.


With seven ships already delivered in Italy, the operationally proven FREMM frigate is designed to defeat submarines through its unique technology. The Australian FREMM design has a low acoustic signature with technologies such as electric drive propulsion, rudder roll stabilisation to reduce the use of hull mounted stabilisers and acoustically isolated machinery. The sonar suite includes variable depth sonar and hull mounted threat classification. It also offers space for two ASW helicopters to prosecute submarines. Combined with Lockheed Martin's Aegis combat system, the Australian FREMM will become the most powerful ship of her type, able to combat air, surface and submarine threats.


Fincantieri has demonstrated its ability to develop a sustained and balanced naval shipbuilding industry outside of Italy. In response to the US Navy's desire to adopt global best practices for its shipyards, since 2008 Fincantieri has worked in partnership with Lockheed Martin on the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program.


"The Lockheed Martin and Fincantieri team are currently in full-rate production of the LCS Freedom-variant, and have delivered five ships to the U.S. Navy to date," said Joe DePietro, Lockheed Martin Corporation Vice President, Small Combatants and Ship Systems.


"Beginning in 2010, the shipyard was transformed to enable serial production of LCS, a complex, high speed naval surface combatant. The result is the ability to produce and deliver ships at a rate of 2-plus per year to support the need for this essential asset to the U.S. Navy. Today, there are eight ships in various stages of construction at Fincantieri Marinette Marine, with one more in long-lead production."


"The Freedom-variant LCS team is comprised of Lockheed Martin, shipbuilder Fincantieri Marinette Marine, naval architect Gibbs & Cox, and more than 800 suppliers in 42 states. We are proud of our team and our 15-year partnership with Fincantieri Marinette Marine and the U.S. Navy to build and deliver these capable ships to the fleet," DePietro said.