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POLA Sigma 10514 ARM Reformador Frigate Launched for Mexican Navy

The first Damen SIGMA 10514 frigate for the Mexican Navy was launched on November 23, 2018 at The Astillero de Marina No. 20 Mexican Naval Shipyard (ASTIMAR-20) in Salina Cruz (Oaxaca). In the Mexican Navy, this ship is officially referred to as the "long-range ocean patrol ship" (Patrulla Oceánica de Largo Alcance - POLA). The vessel is called POLA 101 Reformador ("Reformer").

POLA Sigma 10514 ARM Reformador Frigate Launched for Mexican Navy 1 Launch ceremony of the POLA 101 Reformador frigate at the Mexican naval shipyard Astillero de Marina No. 20 (ASTIMAR-20) in Salina Cruz (Oaxaca). 23.11.2018 (c) Marine Ministry of Mexico

The Mexican flag was hoisted on the frigate. The ceremony was attended by the President of Mexico, Enrique Peña Neto (whose term of office expires on December 1). The ship was removed from the construction dock to a very high degree of readiness and should be begin sea trials in December 2019, with delivery to the Mexican fleet set for April 2020.

The official laying of the frigate for Mexico took place on August 17, 2017 at the Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding (DSNS) of the Damen group in Vlissingen (Netherlands). Two hull sections of the ship were made there, which were then transported to Mexico at the naval shipyard ASTIMAR-20 in Salina Cruz. The Mexican shipyard manufactured the remaining four sections of the hull and assembled and equipped the ship.

Initially, the Mexican Navy planned to have six POLA ships, of which five were scheduled to be operational by 2024, with construction at ASTIMAR-20. However, during the launch of the Reformador frigate, the leaders of the Mexican Navy announced more cautious plans to have eight ships of this project (four each in the Atlantic and Pacific fleets) with their construction spread over 20 years "depending on the level of funding." So far, no contracts with Damen for the following ships of this type have been concluded. It should be noted that the Mexican Navy already has a long experience of successful cooperation with the Damen group, leading, under its projects and with its assistance, the construction of large patrol boats of the Damen Stan Patrol 4207 type (Tenochtitlan type) and auxiliary vessels.

For the Mexican Navy, the construction of the SIGMA 10514 frigate was a historic event, as Reformador became the first Mexican large warship to be built in more than 80 years — from the first half of the 1930s, when six gunboats were ordered in Spain. After that, all significant surface warships of the Mexican Navy were received from the US Navy.

POLA Sigma 10514 ARM Reformador Frigate Launched for Mexican Navy 2 The hangar can accommodate an MH-60R Seahawk multipurpose (anti-submarine) helicopter.

The frigate of the SIGMA 10514 project being built for the Mexican Navy is similar in type to the two frigates of the same type built with the assistance of Damen in Indonesia (PKR). The Mexican ship has a standard displacement of 2,575 tons, a length of 107.14 meters, a width of 14.08 meters and a draft of 3.75 meters. The two-shaft diesel-electric power plant (CODOE) includes two 9240 kW diesel engines, six 735 kW diesel generators and two electric motors. It has a maximum speed of 28 knots, economic 18 knots, low noise 14 knots. Its range is 5,000 nautical miles at economic speed, with an endurance of 20 days. Full fuel capacity is 300 tons. The crew consists of 122 sailors.

Weapon systems will include Boeing RGM-84L Harpoon Block II anti-ship missile launchers (most likely four), 8x VLS for ESSM, one Raytheon RAM launcher, one 57mm Mk 3 BAE Systems Bofors main gun, two 25mm Rafael Typhoon Mk 38 Mod 2 remotely-controlled artillery mounts, six 12.7mm M2 machine guns and two three-tube Mk 32 SVTT torpedo launchers for raytheon mk 54 mod 0. The hangar can accommodate an MH-60R Seahawk multipurpose (anti-submarine) helicopter. The ship is equipped with a Thales SMART-S Mk 2 radar, Raytheon Anschütz Synapsis navigation radar, a Thales Captas-2 towed sonar, Thales TACTICOS combat system and ERA Indra Rigel electronic warfare suite.