Mexico Announces POLA Electronic Sensor Suite and Missile System

Mexico’s secretary of the Navy has announced the electronics suite and surface to air missile system for the Long Range Oceanic Patrol (POLA in Spanish) vessel. According to the announcement, the sensor suite will be supplied by Thales and Indra. The companies will also provide Indra’s HERMESYS Integrated Communications Control System. Finally, Mexico indicated that it had selected Raytheon’s RAM-2 surface-to-air (SAM) missile system to equip the vessel.

Although Mexico has discussed purchasing secondhand frigates from the U.S., no deal was every signed. Ultimately, Mexico decided to purchase a new vessel from Damen. A contract was signed in early 2017. The advantage is that it will enable government to support its internal industry and provide employment opportunities for Mexican workers.

The Sigma 10514 frigate is a little more than 105 meters long with a 14 meter beam and can accommodate 120 crew members. Powered by Combined Diesel or Electric (CODOE) 2×10,000 kW engines and 2×1,300 kW engines, the vessels can reach a maximum speed of 28 knots. Each vessel is equipped with a 76 mm gun, close in weapons system (CIWS), ship-to-ship missile launches, short range air defense weapons, torpedo launchers, chaff dispensers, and a full electronic complement. With the latest announcement, Mexico has decided who will provide the electronic sensor suite. Indra was already selected to equip the POLA with its RIGEL electronic defense system in April 2018.

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