Damen Schelde
Naval Shipbuilding

Proud to serve the Royal Netherlands Navy since 1879

  • Damen & The Royal Netherlands Navy

Damen & The Royal Netherlands Navy

The Royal Netherlands Navy (RNLN) has been the launching customer for eight generations of Damen combatants. As a modern navy, it consistently sets new standards for operational demands on Damen’s combatants, amphibious platforms, logistic support ships and oceangoing patrol vessels. This is for a good reason: to protect national interests worldwide and provide safety and security at and from the sea.

Innovation: the key to export

Our vessels are equipped with advanced technologies, often of Dutch design. Thanks to the close cooperation between the Ministry of Defence and the RNLN, the Dutch naval shipbuilding industry and maritime research institutes, our ships have not only been used for generations within the RNLN, they have also proven to be an excellent export product. The RNLN brought innovation to Damen and we brought innovation to them and subsequently to other navies all over the world.

Ready to take up our role

In a fast-changing world, we need to equip our navy with modern ships, ready to deal with today’s maritime security challenges. Under these demanding circumstances, the RNLN is to replace a large part of its fleet. In the coming decade, the existing multi-purpose frigates, mine countermeasure vessels and submarines will reach the end of their lifespan. Damen is ready to take up its role in realizing these new ships and boats, and to involve the Dutch naval industry and research institutes. This results in return on investment for the taxpayer and for many other Dutch companies.

  • M-frigates
  • Bi-national Replacement


Multi-purpose frigates, or M-frigates, can counter serious naval threats such as other frigates, aircrafts, missiles and submarines. These powerful warships with adequate weapons and sophisticated sensors are also very effective during missions with a lower threat level as well as against so called asymmetric opponents such as terrorists, pirates or illicit traffickers. By serving these multiple purposes, M-frigates are considered the workhorses of the fleet. The M-frigates are operationally deployed and maintained together with their sister ships of the Belgian Navy.


Bi-national Replacement

The current generation of M-frigates is (besides the Belgian navy) also operated by the Portuguese and Chilean navies. All these M-frigates will reach the end of their lifespan somewhere before 2030. Some of these frigates will undergo a life extension. However, the Netherlands and Belgium plan to jointly develop and procure the successors of the M-frigate for their navies.

  • MCM Vessels
  • Bi-national Replacement

MCM Vessels

Mine counter measures (MCM) vessels locate and disarm explosives under water. They also patrol territorial waters, support the national Coast Guard and law enforcement agencies, and search for shipwrecks or lost cargo. MCM Vessels keep our busy sea lanes and harbour entrances safe; a vital condition for the Netherlands’ maritime economy. These vessels are equipped with a range of modern underwater sensors, such as hull mounted sonars, and remotely operated submersible vehicles that can approach and destroy dangerous underwater objects.


Bi-national Replacement

The Netherlands MCM vessels of the Alkmaar class have been successfully operated for about 30 years. These ships have been co-developed with France and Belgium. The Belgian and Netherlands navies operate their fleet of identical MCM vessels jointly. For the next generation MCM vessels, Belgium and the Netherlands plan to continue their close, fruitful collaboration and develop, procure, operate and maintain the new ships together, for both their navies.

  • Walrus-Class Submarine
  • Dutch-Swedish cooperation

Walrus-Class Submarine

The RNLN is the proud owner of four Walrus-class diesel-electric submarines. These domestic built submarines are unique in their performance. They are ‘expeditionary’ which means that they are able to carry out missions far from home, long lasting, autonomous and independent. The Walrus-class submarines are well dimensioned for a long endurance, but quite small by comparison to e.g. nuclear submarines; this also makes them suitable for operations in coastal, shallow waters. They are internationally considered one of the best in its class.


Dutch-Swedish cooperation

In the coming years, the Walrus-class submarines will reach the end of their lifetime and replacement is expected. Damen has teamed up with Saab Kockums to be ready for this replacement programme. The team foresees a unique and substantial role for national research institutes and the Dutch naval industry; not only for the newbuild, but also for decades of maintenance and lifecycle support. Together, Damen and Saab Kockums represent centuries of naval engineering experience and have delivered hundreds of naval vessels and submarines. This truly international cooperation will lead to a submarine with Dutch DNA, fully tailored to the requirements of the Netherlands Ministry of Defence and the RNLN.

Latest news

Dutch State Secretaries reveal future Navy vessel at the MARIN research institute

HSwMS Gotland starts sea trials at Saab shipyard in Karlskrona

Patrol vessels of the Royal Netherlands Navy are back in operation

Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding announced as one of the Fan sponsors of SAIL Amsterdam 2020

DSNS successfully accomplishes two major deadlines

Damen performs float-out of Australian icebreaker

Latest news

Major milestone reached for POLA project

DSNS and DMI sign Letters of Intent on joint development and innovation topics Data Science and Extended Reality for Naval Vessels

Mexican Navy and Damen cooperating in most technologically advanced naval ship in Latin America

HSwMS Gotland Relaunched After Mid-Life Upgrade

WASUB VIII Christened On Behalf of Damen

Can we still build submarines in the Netherlands? Yes.

Latest news

Belgium and the Netherlands empower the purchase of naval vessels

Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding (DSNS) supported Alion during the Canadian Defence exhibition CANSEC, May 30- 31 in Ottawa

Saab-Damen presents design of the replacement Walrus-class submarine

Support of Dutch industry is indispensable for Ministry of Defence


Modernisation of the Dutch Walrus-class submarine, performed by DMI in combination with the Dutch Naval Industry

Latest news

New Defense white paper: great maritime interest to build new naval vessel in the Netherlands

Defense white paper is music to the ears of Damen. Orders may provide the area of Vlissingen with many new jobs.

Ministry of Defense makes good progress with Defense white paper

Defense white paper: Dutch industry is ready for orders for the armed forces

Dutch knowledge for the Walrus replacement project

7 reasons why Saab A26

7 reasons for the technological basis of the Walrus class replacement: Saab’s A26 submarine

Latest news

WASUB is able to build upon the knowledge and experience of Damen

Damen launches cutting-edge Fishery Research Vessel for Angolan Fisheries Ministry

Saab & Damen together at symposium

Nominee Ship of the Year 2017 – Guided weapon frigate ‘KRI Raden Eddy Martadinata’ (KRI REM)

Nominee Maritime Award – Abstract Volume Estimation Tool

Nominee Maritime Award – Propulsion of submarines

Latest news

Nominee Maritime Award – Reuse of residual heat

Delft University of Technology and DSNS collaborate successfully in design challenge about submarines

Nominee Maritime Award – Target Motion Analysis

Submarine seminar proves Swedish quality

Important step for Damen Antarctic Supply Research Vessel

Unique achievements Dutch submarines revealed

Latest news

Veterans exhibition opened at Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding

Damen present at Sail Den Helder and the Navy days

Damen and DUKC present themselves at UDT Conference in Bremen

Damen supports call for Dutch naval sector investment

Nevesbu Submarine Academy certificates for DSNS engineers

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