Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri handed over the second PPA – Pattugliatore Polivalente d’Altura (multipurpose offshore patrol ship) to the Italian Navy in a ceremony in Muggiano on October 22.
Future ITS Francesco Morosini is the second of seven vessels to be built at the Integrated Shipyard of Riva Trigoso and Muggiano with deliveries expected until 2026.
Built in the “light” configuration, which means it is geared for patrolling tasks with basic self-defense capabilities, Francesco Morosini was handed over after being launched in May 2020.
The light version has a complete set of artillery and is developed with the “fitted for” approach that makes it able to quickly deploy growing operational capabilities. The light+ version adds the missile firing capability with actuators planned also for ballistic missile defense. The full version will be able to operate in every naval warfare domain, such as AAW, ASW and ASuW.
The ship’s delivery follows the commissioning of the lead ship in the class, ITS Paolo Thaon di Revel, in March this year.
The PPA program currently has four ships in the water, following the launch of Giovanni delle Bande Nere in February this year. All seven ships are expected to be delivered by 2026.
The 133-meter vessels will be capable of operating high-speed vessels such as RHIB (Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat) up to 11 meters long through lateral cranes or a hauling ramp located at the far stern. Crewed by 145 sailors, the ships will have a top speed of more than 31 knots, and a hangar that will be capable of accommodating two NH90 helicopters.
When it comes to armament, they will field OTO Melara 127/64 LW Vulcano and 76/62 medium-caliber guns. In the full configuration, the ships will carry the SAAM-ESD surface anti-air missile-extended self-defense (SAAM-ESD) system and the Teseo anti-ship missile system.