Van Speijk-class frigate

The Van Speijk-class frigates were built for the Royal Netherlands Navy in the 1960s. They were versions of the British Leander-class frigates with Dutch radars. The British design was chosen in order to enable rapid construction in order to replace elderly destroyer escorts and take up part of the NATO patrol duties of the decommissioned anti-submarine warfare carrier Karel Doorman. The ships were modernised in the late 1970s. All six ships were sold to the Indonesian Navy in 1986–89 and are still in service (as of 2014) as the Ahmad Yani-class frigates.

KRI Karel Satsuit Tubun
Class overview
Name: Van Speijk class
Preceded by: Van Amstel-class
Succeeded by: Kortenaer-class
Built: 1963–1968
In service: 1967–present
Completed: 6
Active: 5
Retired: 1
General characteristics
Class and type: Frigate
Displacement: 2,200 tons standard, 2,850 tons full load
Length: 113.4 m (372 ft)
Beam: 12.5 m (41 ft)
Draught: 5.8 m (19 ft)
  • As built
    • 2 x geared steam turbines
    • 22,370 kW (30,000 shp)
    • 2 x shafts
  • Rebuild
    • Caterpillar diesels (5 ships)
    • SEMT-Pielstick diesels (1 ship)
  • 28.5 kn (52.8 km/h; 32.8 mph)
  • With new diesels - estimated max. 24 kn (44 km/h; 28 mph)
Range: 4,500 nmi (8,300 km; 5,200 mi) at 12 kn (22 km/h; 14 mph)
Complement: 180
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • Radar: LW-03, DA-02, M45, M44[1]
  • Sonar: Types 170B, 162
  • Combat system: SEWACO V
  • 1× OTO-Melara 76 mm gun
  • 2× twin Simbad[2]
  • Launcher for Mistral SAMs
  • SS-N-26 SSM (On at least one ship) (Indonesian Navy)
  • C-802 SSM (On five ships) (Indonesian Navy)
  • 2 × 3 – Mk 32 anti submarine torpedo tubes
Aircraft carried: one NBO-105C
Aviation facilities: Hangar

Dutch modifications

For the most part the Dutch limited their changes to the Leander design to a wholesale replacement of the original British electronics and electrical equipment by those from Dutch manufacturers. Hollandse Signaalapparaten supplied the entire electronics suite. Specifically their LW-02 long-range air-surveillance radar, the DA-02 medium-range air/surface search radar and the M45 combined radar and optical fire control system for the 4.5 in (110 mm) guns. The Dutch HSA M44 radar/visual director for the Seacat anti-aircraft missiles could automatically target in elevation and bearing and allowed the single Seacat launcher on the British ships to be increased to two launchers on the Dutch ships, each with their own director.[3]

Mid-life modernization

Beginning in December 1976 each of the Dutch ships was given a mid-life modernization that took about two years to finish. The twin 4.5-inch turret was replaced by a single Otobreda 76 mm gun and two quadruple mounts for Harpoon anti-ship missiles were fitted abaft of the funnel. The Mk 10 Limbo ASW mortar was replaced by a pair of triple Mk 32 torpedo launchers, one mount on each side of the hangar, and its mount plated over so the flight deck could be increased to allow the ship to carry the larger Westland Lynx helicopter in lieu of the Wasp carried earlier. The removal of the variable-depth sonar from the quarterdeck to the interior of the stern also allowed more room for the flight deck.[4]

The electronics were also upgraded, the LW-02 radar was exchanged for a LW-03 and the DA-02 was replaced by a DA-05 radar. Most importantly an automated combat management system, SEWACO V, was fitted to aid the ship's captain in decision making. Its power plant was also extensively automated. All told these changes allowed the crew to decrease in size from 254 to about 175 which allowed greatly increased standards of habitability.[4]


All ships were named after Dutch naval officers.[3] When sold to Indonesia, they were named after Indonesian Armed Forces heroes.

Name Pennant Number Builder Laid down Launched Completed Fate
Van Speijk F802 NDSM, Amsterdam 1 October 1963 5 March 1965 14 February 1967 sold to Indonesia in 1986 as Slamet Riyadi (352), an Army Lieutenant Colonel killed in Fort Victoria, Maluku
Van Galen F803 KM de Schelde, Vlissingen 25 July 1963 19 June 1965 1 March 1967 sold to Indonesia in 1987 as Yos Sudarso (353), a Navy Commodore killed in Battle of Aru Sea i
Tjerk Hiddes F804 NDSM, Amsterdam 1 June 1964 17 December 1965 16 August 1967 sold to Indonesia in 1986 as Ahmad Yani (351), an Army General killed in the 1965 coup d'état
Van Nes F805 KM de Schelde, Vlissingen 25 July 1965 26 March 1966 9 August 1967 sold to Indonesia in 1986 as Oswald Siahaan (354), a Navy hero killed in Battle of Sibolga Bay
Isaac Sweers F814 NDSM, Amsterdam 5 May 1965 10 March 1967 15 May 1968 sold to Indonesia as Karel Satsuit Tubun (356), a Police officer killed in 1965 PKI's coup d'état
Evertsen F815 KM de Schelde, Vlissingen 6 July 1965 18 June 1966 21 December 1967 sold to Indonesia in 1989 as Abdul Halim Perdanakusuma (355), an Air Force hero

Indonesian service

At least some, if not all, of the Indonesian ships have replaced their Seacat launchers with two twin Simbad launchers.[5][2] Recently, the two quadruple Harpoon launchers were also replaced by Yakhont missile (SS-N-26) launchers purchased from Russia, because the early version Harpoon missiles previously installed were nearing their obsolescence period. There are also some conflicting reports that the Harpoon missiles were replaced with Chinese-sourced C-802 rather than Russian Yakhont. There are some pictures circulating on the internet showing several vessels of the class carrying box launchers that look much too small to be Yakhont's launchers, but they are the right size for C-802.

Pictures released in March 2011 show that modifications were made to KRI Oswald Siahaan with 4 SS-26 Yakhont VLS cells located in the quarterdeck beside the helicopter hangar.[6]

Engine replacement

In Indonesian service, the Van Speijk class is known as the Ahmad Yani class after the lead ship. All were named after Indonesian Armed Forces heroes. Between 2003 and 2008, all vessels of the Ahmad Yani class had their existing steam turbine engines replaced with diesel propulsion.[7][8]

Engine/Gearbox Power Replacement date Shipyard Ships
2 x Caterpillar CAT DITA 3616, Reintjes WAV 1000 P gearboxes 16,000 hp (12,000 kW) 2007–2008 PT Tesco 351, 352, 353, 355
2 x Caterpillar CAT DITA 3612, Reintjes WAF 4566 gearboxes 12,000 hp (8,900 kW) 2003 PT Tesco 356
2 x SEMT Pielstick 12PA6B, Renk SWUF 98 gearboxes 11,800 hp (8,800 kW) 2006 PT PAL/PT Mulia 354


  1. "Indonesia Equips Frigates, Corvette with Stealth Radars". April 15, 2014.
  2. MISTRAL : Rudal Anti Pesawat milik TNI AL
  3. Adams, p. 193
  4. Adams, p. 194
  5. Wertheim, Eric (2007). The Naval Institute Guide to Combat Fleets of the World: Their Ships, Aircraft, and Systems (15th ed.). Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press. p. 308. ISBN 978-1-59114-955-2.
  6. "Official Images from Antara Foto on the Yakhont VLS on KRI Oswald Siahaan".
  7. "UPGRADES AND REFITS, Indonesia (Indonesia), UPGRADES AND REFITS". Jane's Naval Construction and Retrofit Markets. 2008-03-11. Retrieved 2008-11-27.
  8. TNI AL “Repowering” 6 Kapal


  • Adamsn, Thomas A. (1982). John Roberts (ed.). Dutch Leanders: The Van Speijk Class. Warship. VI. London: Conway Maritime Press. pp. 192–4. ISBN 0-85177-265-X.
  • Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1947–1995 ISBN 0-85177-605-1
  • W.H.E., van Amstel (1991). De schepen van de Koninklijke Marine vanaf 1945. Alkmaar: De Alk. ISBN 9060139976.
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