he Oliver Hazard Perry class (sometimes referred to as the Perry class or FFG-7 class), is a class of frigates named after Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry. The class was designed in the United States in the mid-1970s as general-purpose escort vessels, capable of most naval operations, yet cheap enough to be bought in large quantities to replace World War II-era destroyers. 55 ships were built in the United States: 51 for the United States Navy and four for the Royal Australian Navy. Additionally, 8 were built in Taiwan, 6 in Spain and 2 in Australia for their respective navies, and ex-USN ships have been acquired by the navies of Bahrain, Egypt, Poland and Turkey, with Pakistan requesting six ships in 2007
Perry class frigates were designed primarily as Undersea Warfare ships intended to provide open-ocean escort of amphibious ships and convoys in low to moderate threat environments in a global war with the Soviet Union. They could also provide limited defense against anti-ship missiles extant in the 70s and 80s. The ships are equipped to escort and protect carrier battle groups, amphibious landing groups, underway replenishment groups and convoys. They can also conduct independent operations to perform such tasks as counterdrug surveillance, maritime interception operations, and exercises with other nations. The addition of NTDS, LAMPS helicopters, and the Tactical Towed Array System (TACTAS) gave these ships a combat capability far beyond the class program expectations, and has made the ships an integral and valued asset in virtually any war-at-sea scenario and particularly well suited for operation in the littoral.
By kjfitz @ 2008-05-19 16:12:57