The Philippine Navy holds an arrival ceremony to welcome its 2 new warships acquired from Australia on Monday, August 10, 2015.
The ceremony was presided by no less than Vice Adm. Jesus C Millan, the Flag Officer In Command, Philippine Navy (FOIC, PN) with Adm. Leopoldo M Alano, the commander of the Philippine Fleet. Commodore Narciso A Vingson, the commander of Sealift Amphibious Force, Australian dignitaries and other members of the Command team and also joined the PN in welcoming these vessels with more or less 34 PN personnel onboard.
|BRP Ivatan (AT-298) and BRP Batak (AT-299)|
|AgustaWestland AW109 photo at PN HQ / J.Roson|
In December 2013, the PN received and commission the its first 3 AgustaWestland AW109 helicopters from same supplier which worth Php 1,337,176,584.00 (US$32.544 million), financed by the AFP Modernization Program with assistance from the Department of Energy, Max Defense blog told.
An option for 2 more is also included in the contract, which was realized later on for a total budget for the 5 helicopters plus ILS for probably less than Php 2.2 billion, it added.
The said helicopters features a glass cockpit, a cabin for 2 pilots and 4 passengers and the FLIR control panel on the passenger cabin to be operated by a specialized crew member. The FLIR sensors, made by American firm FLIR Systems, will enable the helicopter crew to see in poor visibility or weather conditions due to the system's use of thermal radiation to create a picture. It can be used for surveillance of humans for target tracking or rescue at sea, target acquisition and tracking, and piloting of helicopter in poor weather condition. At the same time, the helicopter is equipped with a video transmitter that can send live feed video to land or ship bases. Also equipped with a weather radar, transponders and storm/lighting detection systems, very important features when operating on an open sea, told Max Defense.
Though incapable of carrying anti-submarine warfare, torpedo or long range missiles, Max Defense lauded it as a good addition to PN's arsenals to protect the country's territories from external threats.
Sources : Max Defense / Phillippine Navy / Inquirer.net