GLASGOW, United Kingdom. – Diamond, the third of the Royal Navy’s new Type 45 class of anti-air warfare destroyers, was successfully launched from the BAE Systems' shipyard at Govan, on the Clyde, today.
The Lady Sponsor, Mrs Suzie Johns, wife of Vice Admiral Adrian Johns CBE, the Royal Navy’s Second Sea Lord and Commander in Chief Naval Home Command, named the ship at the ceremony which included an aerial display from a Royal Navy Sea King helicopter and entertainment from Strathclyde Police Pipe Band.
As the bottle of champagne was broken on the ship’s bow, over 12,000 people gathered in the yard to watch the launch were treated to a fireworks display to mark this special occasion.
Speaking after the launch, BAE Systems Surface Fleet Solutions managing director Vic Emery said: “This is the second successful launch we have seen at Govan in 2007 and I am delighted that so many people came along to share the occasion with us, particularly the 5,000 children who attended with their schools.
“The success on the Type 45 contract so far is testament to the innovation, design and engineering skills of our employees and partners and proof of our commitment to building the next generation of warships for the Royal Navy.”
The fleet of up to eight Type 45 anti-air warfare destroyers, in concert with the recently announced Future Aircraft Carrier part of which will also be built at Govan, will provide the backbone of the Royal Navy’s air defences for much of the first half of the 21st century.
Each destroyer will be able to engage a large number of targets simultaneously, and defend aircraft carriers or groups of ships, such as an amphibious landing force, against the strongest future threats from the air. The vessels will contribute a specialist air warfare capability to worldwide maritime and joint operations in until 2040.
BAE Systems is the premier global defence and aerospace company delivering a full range of products and services for air, land and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, information technology solutions and customer support services. With 96,000 employees worldwide, BAE Systems' sales exceeded £15 billion (US $27 billion) in 2006, on a pro forma basis, assuming BAE Systems had owned Armor Holdings Inc for the whole of 2006.
Thousands Gather on the Clyde to Watch the Launch of Diamond