Navy

HMS Duncan Towed Back To Port

HMS Duncan, the Royal Navy's newest destroyer, has limped back to port just two days after setting sail from Plymouth. The Type 45 is one of...

HMS Duncan, the Royal Navy's newest destroyer, has limped back to port just two days after setting sail from Plymouth.
 
The Type 45 is one of four NATO vessels that currently form the Standing NATO Maritime Group 1, comprising ships from the Royal Navy, the Spanish and Portuguese navies and a German auxiliary tanker.
 
Having visited Devonport on the weekend the fleet had been conducting training exercises off the south coast of England. A Royal Navy spokesperson said: 
"HMS Duncan experienced technical issues and will resume operations once a full assessment has taken place."
It's understood tug assistance was used during berthing as a ship-handling precaution.
 
 
The Navy's six Type 45 destroyers have been beset by problems, with in excess of 5,000 faults recorded since they launched.
 
Earlier this year the Ministry of Defence admitted there were issues with the engines of the destroyers following a BBC investigation. 
 
From 2019 each £1 billion destroyer is set to be refitted in a bid to stop the problem which has affected propulsion. 
 
Sources say the Type 45 problems date back well before February this year when the story broke.
 
On occasion, destroyers have faced a total loss of propulsion, as well as electrical failure. 
 
The Type 45 uses a new engine system known as Integrated Electric Propulsion and whilst there was thought to be many advantages to the system, including with fuel efficiency, the intercooler has a 'major design flaw' resulting in the engines sometimes cutting out altogether. 
 
The MoD have yet to say how frequently these problems happen.
 
The work is expected to be staggered over a number of years, so some ships remain available for operational commitments at all times.
 
 
It's not just the Royal Navy however that's experiencing problems with its newest ships. The futuristic USS Zumwalt, the world's most advanced warship, broke down this week while transiting the Panama Canal.
 
The American destroyer suffered slight damage when it hit lock walls in the canal, with the crew seeing water getting into bearings that connect electrical motors to the vessel's driveshafts.
 
 
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