Seven things to know about the Royal Navy’s Minehunters
Find out how Minehunters work, and how this Royal Navy capability is keeping Britain safe whilst supporting jobs for people back home.
1. Safe passage
Minehunters clear the seas of mines to allow safe passage for other ships.
They do this by swiftly detecting and neutralising the threat posed by mines, reassuring allied and other shipping alike that it is safe to proceed.
2. The Hunt Class
The Hunt Class Mine Counter Measure Vessels (MCMVs) use high definition sonar to scour the world’s seabeds for mines and lost explosives.
Length: 60 metres
Displacement: 725 tonnes
Range: 1,500 nautical miles
Crew size: 47 on-board
3. The Sandown Class
The Sandown Class, like the Hunt Class, have glass-reinforced plastic hulls to conceal their presence from the threat of sea-mines.
Their sonars are capable of detecting and classifying an object the size of a football up to 1,000 metres away.
Length: 52.5 metres
Displacement: 600 tonnes
Range: 2,500 nautical miles
Crew size: 40 on-board
4. Disposing of mines
When a mine is found, these are then destroyed by the Minehunter’s clearance diving teams or SeaFox Mine Disposal system.
This is the remotely operated submersible is used to identify the threat of underwater explosives through fibre optic cables from the parent ship. The unit is guided to the target and will then detonate a targeted explosion using a shaped charge to dispose of the mine.
5. Jobs and local economies
A £5.5 million contract will provide support for small diesel engines onboard critical Royal Navy vessels, including Minehunters.
The award of the contract will sustain highly-skilled jobs within the marine industry in the Northeast of England, as well as providing work to those enrolled in the company’s sponsored engineering apprenticeship scheme.
Small diesel engines are the main engines to vessels like the Minehunters and also are fitted alongside larger engines in vessels throughout the Royal Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) fleet as emergency diesels.
These wider vessels include the Type 23 frigates 👇
Bay-Class RFA 👇
Albion Class amphibious assault ships 👇
7. Why we need them
Without safe passages, our food supplies, parcels and fuel can’t get to Britain.
Minehunters protect the oceans, our Armed Forces personnel and our way of life back home.