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Monthly Defense News Recap – April 2022
May 24, 2022
Illustration of the Pakistan Navy's Jinnah-Class Frigate
Picture Source: Defence Turkey

Monthly Defense News Recap – April 2022

This week’s Quwa Premium article is a recap of some defence news items from around the world. Besides a basic overview of the news, this article also offers short-form analysis of each issue.

ASFAT A.Ş. Selects SSI’s ShipConstructor Solution for Jinnah-Class Frigate

To support the engineering process of the Pakistan Navy’s (PN) Jinnah-class frigate program, the Turkish defence contractor ASFAT A.Ş. selects SSI’s ShipConstructor suite.

ShipConstructor is a software platform that works within AutoCAD. Its selection indicates that the PN has frozen the design requirements of the Jinnah-class frigate. Thus, ASFAT A.Ş. and the PN’s in-house design bureau, the Navy Research and Development Institute (NRDI), will now implement the ship’s final design work. SSI’s ShipConstructor will play a part in the modelling and engineering work of the hull.

Pakistan initiated the Jinnah-class frigate (JCF) as part of its MILGEM corvette acquisition from Turkey back in 2018. Under the contract, the PN is slated to receive four MILGEM corvettes (designated as the Babur-class corvette) and an indigenous, jointly-designed frigate.

It seems that the JCF will play a key part in driving the PN’s goal to build a 50-strong surface fleet, of which 20 ships will be “major surface vessels.” The latter refers to frigates and, potentially, corvettes. Given that it is investing in an original design program, the PN likely intends to construct a large number of JCFs…

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Pakistan Navy Inducts 4th Azmat-Class Fast Attack Craft, PNS Haibat

On April 01, 2022, the Pakistan Navy (PN) inducted the fourth Azmat-class fast attack craft-missile (FAC-M), PNS Haibat. According to the PN, the PNS Haibat is the first craft designed by Maritime Technologies Complex (MTC) and built at Karachi Shipyards & Engineering Works (KSEW).

While evidently a direct variant of the Azmat-class FAC-M, Pakistan likely completed the PNS Haibat with its own original design and production effort. In other words, it did not use pre-defined kits of materials, but carried out its own engineering work and sourced the inputs from abroad directly.

The most obvious external trait of the PNS Haibat is that it is armed with six Harbah dual-land-attack and anti-ship cruising missiles. This would make the PNS Haibat the second of the Azmat-class FAC-M line (i.e., after PNS Himmat) to be configured in this manner…

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Turkey’s Bayraktar TB2 Furthers its Wartime Utility

Not only has the Bayraktar TB2 been a commercial success, but it has risen to folk hero status in both the Ukrainian military and populace. However, the TB2 has reportedly notched another key success point to its operational history by playing a role in the loss of the Moskova, a Russian Navy Slava-class cruiser.

Granted, the TB2 was not directly responsible for the Moskova’s loss. In fact, it seems operational issues on Russia’s part that largely led to the ship’s destruction.

However, the fact that TB2 is making its way to naval operations is not surprising. Turkey itself envisioned using drones in the naval theater (albeit through the improved TB3 and jet-powered Kızılelma/MIUS). The TB2 is not an attack option for large ships, but it can support naval operations by serving as a sensor option and, as alleged in the case of the Moskova, as a decoy option.

That said, the TB2 could still emerge as a key anti-access and area-denial (A2/AD) asset in some contexts.

For example, TB2s are a genuine threat for amphibious landing forces, especially infantry and light armour. Likewise, the TB2 can also potentially threaten small and/or lesser-equipped surface warships, especially if the drone operator can deploy stand-off range weapons (SOW)…

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End of excerpt (581, 1,117 words)

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