Delivery of Israel’s first Sa’ar 6 corvette delays due to COVID-19 outbreak

Israel expects Sa'ar 6 class corvette to contribute its sovereignty in the near and far seas

According to Jerusalem Post, the arrival of first Sa’ar 6 class corvette of the Israeli Navy, the INS Magen, will be delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to shake the world.

Israel Defence Forces (IDF) expects ship to arrive in 2020, but several months later than expected.

“In light of the spread of the coronavirus around the world, there are also impacts on the Sa’ar 6 project. The latest impacts and schedules will become clear in the coming weeks,” the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said in a statement, adding that “despite the effects of the virus, the INS Magen is expected to arrive in Israel in 2020.”

The first of the four Sa’ar 6 corvettes, the INS Magen, began her sea trials in Kiel, Germany, on March 10, and at the beginning of April the German government approved the export license for the four corvettes as well as a submarine to Egypt.

The construction of the four Sa’ar 6 warships was agreed to in a 430 million euro deal between Israel and the German company ThyssenKrupp in 2015.

The INS Magen was expected to arrive at the end of 2019 but is now expected to be delivered later this year. The remaining three corvettes, whose mission will be to defend Israel’s offshore natural gas reserves, as well as other strategic maritime assets, will follow, with the last arriving by 2021.

Sa’ar 6 Class:

The new 90-meter-long ship will carry a crew of 70 sailors, who will be assisted by unmanned aerial vehicles and naval helicopters.

She will have a maximum speed of 24 knots with a range of 2,500 nautical miles.

Sa’ar 6 class corvettes will be fitted with two Naval Iron Dome short range defense missile launchers with 20 Tamir missiles for each launcher, 32 vertical launch cells for the Barak-8 long-range surface-to-air missile (SAMs) naval defense system and 16 anti-ship missiles.

In addition to interception missile defense systems, the ships will also have 16 anti-ship missiles, one 76 mm. OTO Melara Super Rapid main gun, two Typhoon 25 mm. remote weapon stations and two 324 mm. torpedo launchers for MK54 Lightweight Torpedoes.

Each ship will also be outfitted with cyber and electronic warfare systems and Elta’s EL/M-2248 MF-STAR active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar capable of tracking both air and surface targets.

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