On 17 June 2019, the F125 Baden-Württemberg frigate was officially commissioned in a ceremony in the presence of German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen. The German Navy now has the most modern and powerful German frigate in service.
Baden-Württemberg was built by ARGE F125 with thyssenkrupp Marine Systems as lead company. The newly designed F125-class ships, with highly complex systems and approx. 28,000 sensors, have a very high degree of automation, which makes it possible to halve the crew size in comparison to previous German frigate classes.
The ships can remain in their operational area for up to two years. This way, the number of the usually very long transits can be significantly reduced. The F125 Baden-Württemberg is the first ship worldwide to successfully implement the intensive use concept, according to thyssenkrupp Marine Systems.
Next to the traditional tasks of national and alliance defence, the ships are designed for conflict prevention, crisis management and intervention and stabilisation operations in the international arena. In addition to the ability to fight offshore and onshore targets, they also have anti-aircraft systems and helicopters specially equipped for submarine hunting.
The contract for the construction of the four frigates became effective in June 2007. The concept, design and a detailed design phase followed. Around 90% of the highly complex systems on board the F125 were specially developed for this new class of ships. Due to this high complexity and the related, different challenges as well as the further modular development of the ship during the project, Baden-Württemberg was delivered about 3 years after the contractually agreed date.
The second class F125 ship, the Nordrhein-Westfalen will be ready to be handed over to the customer in 2019. The handing over of the 3rd and 4th ship is planned to take place successively within the next 2 years.
The ARGE F125 consortium comprises thyssenkrupp Marine Systems as the lead company and Fr. Lürssen Werft in Bremen. The pre-fitted bow sections are being manufactured at the shipyards of the Lürssen Group in Bremen and Wolgast. Construction of the stern sections, the joining of the two sections and further fitting out was being carried out at Blohm+Voss Shipyards in Hamburg under the leadership of thyssenkrupp Marine Systems.
In March 2006, EADS (now Hensoldt) was contracted to supply the F125 command and control (C2) and weapons deployment system, called FuWES. The contract covered the development and delivery of the system, including the complete software, hardware and infrastructure, and FuWES testing and performance verification for all four frigates.
The FuWES system has an open and modular structure, allowing flexibility to accommodate future additional or modified systems. In order to provide tactical data exchange and a high level of interoperability with other joint and combined military platforms, the communications systems, lLink 11, Link 16 and Link 22 are integrated into the F125 C2 system. The combat management system is operated from the Atlas Elektronik OMADA consoles, designed specifically for the F125.
Previously Anschutz & Co, now Raytheon Anschutz was contracted in August 2008 for the supply of the integrated bridge and navigation system for the F125 frigates. The integrated bridge and navigation system consists of six multi-function consoles capable of displaying various functions such as two X/S-band radars, two electronic chart display and information systems (ECDIS) and NautoConning navigation data, which reads and displays in a logically arranged manner and distributes the navigation data.