NavyClippings brings us two reports of new offshore patrol vessels (OPVs). These two are of a size between that of typical “Inshore Patrol Vessels” and OPVs. Neither has accommodations for a helicopter but both have two RHIBs. They are pretty close in size to USCG 210 foot WMECs, 210 ft 6 in (64.16 m) length over all (loa) with a 34 ft (10.36 m) beam.
First there is project Biro for the South African Navy. The three ships being built by Damen Shipyards Cape Town (DSCT) are 62×11 meter (203.4′ long, 36’1″ beam, Stan Patrol 6211 vessels), which have a maximum speed of 26.5 knots, a range of 4 000 nautical miles, endurance of 14 days, and a crew of up to 62 (core crew is 40).
The second class being built by French shipyard Piriou, will include three OPVs (with an option for a fourth).
The OPV 58S offshore patrol vessels for Senegal are 62 metres long, 9.5 metres wide and have a maximum draft of 2.9 metres. They have steel hulls and aluminium superstructures with a 360 degree panoramic bridge, a rapid deployment/recovery system for two boats and be each able to accommodate up to 48 people, including 24 crew members. Top speed is 21 knots with a range of 4 500 miles at 12 knots, for a 25 day endurance.
The MBDA Marte Mk 2Ns anti-ship cruise missiles which would be in the canisters visible between the 76mm gun and the bridge are a bit smaller than most missiles of this type.
The Piriou OPV58S design-wise seems to be Piriou’s entry into the French Navy’s PLG patrol boat tender back in 2013 – which they lost against SOCARENAM.
That tender had pretty definitive specs on what the boats were supposed to look like (dimensions, crew, speed, endurance etc), which are mirrored in the OPV58S. These requirements were derived from shallow-water and limited riverine use in French Guyana. The Piriou design was likely cleaned up a bit since to allow for container storage and for the heavier armament in order to appeal to other international customers.
The SOCARENAM-built three vessels for the French Navy from that tender are deployed in a Coastguard role in the Carribean and regularly train with the USCG in the area. They carry a 20mm RWS and some .50cal MGs for armament.