In the largest wave basin of the Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN) in Wageningen, the Royal Netherlands Navy’s future Combat Support Ship was tested on November 9th, MARIN’s 10.000th towing tank model. State Secretary of Defence B. (Barbara) Visser and State Secretary of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy M.C.G. (Mona) Keijzer jointly initiated the start of the test for model number 10.000. This is the first time that the design of the future navy vessel, which will be developed and built The Netherlands, is publicly shown. Vice Admiral R.A. (Rob) Kramer, commander of the Naval Forces was present as well. Assisted by MARIN’s newest simulator techniques, the Admiral sailed the vessel into its home port Den Helder in a virtual reality environment.
Vice Admiral R.A. (Rob) Kramer, Commander of the Dutch Naval Forces:
“We are very happy with the Combat Support Ship as a first step towards a renewal of the fleet of the Royal Netherlands Navy. We urgently need a second replenishment vessel to fulfill our duties at sea and regain balance in our fleet. The vessel perfectly fits our tradition of effective and innovative vessels. This is important because future operations at sea are becoming more complex. We are using advanced technology such as remote controlled systems. This is very demanding for the crew which is continuously decreasing in size. To do this in a safe and effective environment, we need the research capabilities of MARIN and TNO to prove the successful operational use.”
MARIN-director Bas Buchner:
“More than eighty years ago we tested our first towing tank model for the Royal Netherlands Navy. We are happy that we still contribute to the innovative naval vessels of the future. After 10.000 models, MARIN does not want to look at the past but focus on the future. Beyond the horizon. In correspondence with our motto “Better Ships, Blue Oceans” we focus on the sea and the vessel of the future. We want vessels to be cleaner, smarter and safer and we want to contribute to the sustainable use of the sea. Therefore we want to show the visitors of our public event the future of autonomous zero-emmission vessels, floating mega-islands and sustainable energy- and food production at sea.
The Combat Support Ship is a very important development for Damen Shipyards as well. The Ministry of Defence has stated its intention to build the vessel at the Dutch shipyard. This would be the first order of the Royal Netherlands Navy for Damen in a long period. The Combat Support Ship shows resemblance with the Joint Support Ship Zn. Ms. Karel Doorman, a vessel that was built by Damen as well. The State Secretary of Defence intends to present a D-letter in 2019 and the vessel is to be operational in 2023.