Navy Israeli Navy’s New Sa`ar 6 Corvette Arrives in Haifa from Germany

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The first new Sa’ar 6 class warship INS Magen arrived in Haifa on December 2, 2020 and was delivered to the Israeli Naval Forces. This is the first new ship received by the Israeli Navy since 1994 when the INS Hanit was delivered.

The ship was constructed in Germany by Thyssen Krupp Maritime Systems (TKMS) over a period of 14 months. The ship arrived in Israel without any sensors or weapons. The fitting of the sensors and weapons will take another 18 months.

INS Magen is the first ship of a class of 4 ships. The ship’s name means “Shield” in Hebrew. It will be followed by INS Oz (Valor), INS Atzmaut (Independence), and INS Nitzahon (Victory).

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) decided to acquire new warships to protect its interest on the sea in 2013. The discovery of rich hydrocarbon resources and the inauguration of Karish-Tanin, Leviathan, and Tamar gas fields were important factors. These gas fields and the offshore gas platforms have been declared national assets by the State of Israel and its navy is tasked to protect these vital infrastructures.

Furthermore 98% of the goods imported to Israel come from the sea, protecting trade traffic from any enemy action during a war is vital for Israel.

The maritime territory the Israeli Navy is committed to protecting is twice the size of the land of Israel. At the ceremony in Haifa, Rear Admiral Eyal HAREL, Head of Naval Operations, Israeli Navy stated that the Sa’ar 6 Class Corvettes will bolster the Navy’s capacity to defend the offshore gas facilities from terror groups such as Hezbollah or Hamas.

In 2006 during the Second Lebanon War, the Sa’ar 5 Class Corvette INS Hanit was hit by a C-701 missile made in China and sent to Lebanon by Iran, killing 4 sailors.

The Israeli Navy believes that Hezbollah and other non-government actors in the region can gain access to sophisticated anti-ship missiles such as C-802 or even Russian Yakhont or Iranian Khalij Fars missiles.

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Second Sa'ar 6 missile ship docks in Haifa​


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Second Sa'ar 6 missile ship docks in Haifa
(photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)

The second of four Sa’ar 6 missile corvette, INS Oz, docked at Haifa port on Wednesday, a month after it was handed over to the Israel Navy.

INS Oz will join INS Magen that arrived in December and they will guard the offshore gas production facilities and Israel’s territorial waters.

he ship’s arrival is “a significant milestone in the strengthening of Israel’s power, including in the exclusive economic zone,” the IDF said. “The ship will be a key part of Israel’s defense of its territorial waters and its offshore energy resources.”

Second Sa'ar 6 missile ship docks in Haifa. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
Second Sa'ar 6 missile ship docks in Haifa. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)


Built by Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems in Kiel, Germany, INS Oz is the second of four Sa’ar 6 ships to come to Israel following INS Magen and will be operational within two years. The two others are named INS Atzma’ut and INS Nitzahon, with the last expected to arrive by the end of 2021.

At the ceremony in Haifa, Defense Minister Benny Gantz said the new ship was a “depiction of the power that we are prepared to employ across all fronts, including Lebanon and beyond, in preventing attempts by our enemies to equip themselves with weaponry that would undermine regional stability.”

Also in attendance was the commander of the Navy, Vice-Admiral Eli Sharvit, who said that the commanders and fighters of the ship have taken part in “another milestone” in building Israel’s maritime defense wall.


“The ships joining the ranks of the navy are as imperative as air is to breathing, as the security picture is incessantly changing and new threats are raising their heads,” he said.

“There is no doubt that INS Oz, like its sister ships, is a technological wonder, but just as it is a sign of advancement, it is also a sign of extensive cooperation and cross-border human power.”

The new 90-meter long 2,000-ton corvettes have a maximum speed of 24 knots and a range of 2,500 nautical miles. Though not much longer than the Sa’ar 5 class, they have been built to better handle rough seas and stay out of port for longer.

The new class will be covered by almost 300 static radar arrays that will be able to detect incoming aerial threats. Incoming rockets can be shot down by either two naval Iron Dome interceptors and two Barak-8 batteries can shoot down hostile cruise and ballistic missiles.

In addition to interception missile defense systems, the ships will also carry 16 anti-ship missiles, one 76mm Oto Melara super-rapid main gun, two Typhoon 25mm remote weapon stations and two 324mm torpedo launchers for MK54 lightweight torpedoes.

Each Saar 6 ship will also be outfitted with cyber and electronic warfare systems and Elta’s EL/M-2248 MF-STAR active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar, capable of tracking both air and surface targets.

Most of these weapons and radar systems are to be installed in Israel.

Should war break out, at least two Sa’ar 6 ships will be deployed to protect Israel’s Exclusive Economic Zone and its gas rigs, while the rest of the fleet would assist ground forces by attacking enemy troops and threats that could target both the homefront and the gas assets, while simultaneously destroying any aerial threats launched at maritime assets and naval vessels.

 

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In front "Oz" which just arrived behind "Magen" which arrived in December 2020. Magen already equipped with radars and other systems.
 

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More like,Sa'ar class frigate.
 

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More like,Sa'ar class frigate.
In terms of displacement it is corvette.
In terms of air defence it is destroyer.
In terms ASW it is corvette.
 
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