Home Europe EDA puts its weight behind “European corvette” project

EDA puts its weight behind “European corvette” project

Abu Dhabi-class corvette
A photo accompanying the EDA announcement hints at the possibility of the new corvette being based on a design by Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri

The European Defence Agency has approved the launch of a project to contribute to the development of a European patrol corvette (EPC).

The corvette will be developed within the European Unions’ Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) program with participation from Italy, France, Spain and Greece. Italy is leading the undertaking.

Part of the third batch of PESCO projects approved in November 2019, the project aims at designing and developing a new class of military ship which will host several systems and payloads for a range of different tasks. The EPC will primarily be tasked with maritime situational awareness, surface superiority and power projection.

The participating member states aim to produce their first corvette prototype in 2026-2027.

The EPC is envisaged as a common platform, a shared baseline, which can be customized according to national needs and specifications. The overall displacement is expected to be no more than 3,000 tons, which will allow the ship to operate from minor harbors (draft less than 5.5 meters). The length of the ship, to be equipped with diesel and/or electrical engines, should not exceed 110 meters.

The ship will be based on an open plug-and-play architecture which will facilitate the versatility of response in the framework of EU CSDP operations and will provide a quick reaction capability, applicable to a broad range of scenarios.

European Defence Agency role in the European corvette project

EDA is launching a project that will develop and adopt common staff target (CST), common staff requirements (CSR) and a business case (BC). The objective of these documents, which are an indispensable step for a follow-on phase of the EPC PESCO project, is to shape the common core part and identify specifications and requirements that would be compatible with the modularity concept of the military ship.

“EDA is delighted to support this ambitious and innovative PESCO project. The European Patrol Corvette project responds directly to an existing gap in Europe’s capability landscape acknowledged by member states during the revision of the capability development plan (CDP) in 2018,” EDA’s chief executive Jiří Šedivý said.