Museum Ship of the Navy

A CGI of the future RMN museum. Arkitek Kamal Alwi.

SHAH ALAM: Museum Ship of the navy. KD Hang Tuah has been formally declared as the museum ship of the navy in a ceremony at the Lumut naval base on Nov. 21.

The ceremony is part of the RMN 15 to 5 transformation plan. Under the plan the navy will reduce the number of ship types from 15 to 5. Unlike other ships, Hang Tuah will not be decommissioned but instead will keep it’s commission but will now be known as a museum ship from today onwards.

KD Hang Tuah

The ship will berthed at the RMN jetty at the Lumut naval base until the new navy museum also located in Lumut is completed.
A CGI of the future RMN museum. Arkitek Kamal Alwi.

The RMN has also launched its first drone squadron today. The squadron will operate the Boeing Insitu Scaneagle 2 UAV. The Scaneagles were gifted by the United States under the Maritime Security Initiative programme.
A Scan Eagle launches from a pneumatic wedge catapult launcher on the flight deck aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Saipan. US Navy picture.

Apart from Malaysia the US has donated the Scaneagles to Philippines and Indonesia under the same programme, this year.
Scaneagle UAV, which was deployed at ESSCOM under a contract to Deftech previously.

The two Scaneagle systems are to be delivered next year. A standard Scaneagle system composed of a launcher/receiver; a command and control system and three air vehicles. Previously, Deftech operated the Scaneagle UAV under a contract with the Defence Ministry. The contract, operated in the ESSCOM AOR, lapsed without being renewed after all air vehicles were lost in accidents.

– Malaysian Defence

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37 Comments

  1. Our beloved Prime Minister Tun Dr.Mahathir had asked for Russia’s President Vladimir Putin’s help in repairing Malaysia’s MiG-29N and Su-30MKM fighter jets. Since Russia had expressed desire to upgrade the MiG-29N to MiG-29SM fighter jets back in 2017, it is only plausible to say that the MiG-29N and Su-30MKM will be repaired and upgraded by Russia soon. Hopefully the F-5 Tiger fighter jets will be upgraded to the Super Tigris specification like what is being done by Thailand. And it would be prudent to upgrade the Hawk and Aeramachi light fighter jets too. The F/A-18D Hornets can be upgraded to F/A-18E Super Hornetm And the 4.5+ generation MiG-35 multirole fighter jets can be bought from Russia as it is very affordable given Malaysia financial status at the moment.

  2. What is our airforce is doing to preserve its history? What is the plan for the sungai besi airforce museum and its historical artifacts? Any plans to preserve at least 1 nuri or the MiG-29?

  3. So what will happen to KD Rahmat? If its a tourism project can tourism ministry also provide funding for maintaining and marketing it at the appropriate cost and location instead of in Lumut. (Look at Sydney Maritime Museum for example). Theres absolutely no need to divert limited funding to a tourism cause unless it is a profitable venture overall.

  4. @ sundra anand

    Are you for real? Most F-5s has been passed to universities, museums and placed as gate guards. Super tigris upgrade is 100% with israeli components. Probably you are in your own alternative reality where malaysia is not a majority muslim country?

    F/A-18D and super hornets has totally different airframes. It is like saying 1985 proton saga can be upgraded to 2018 proton saga (if you are malaysian you will get this)

  5. How many Scaneagles make a squadron, Marhalim? Will they be used on the LCS? Indonesia got 4 and the Filipinos 6 under the same MSI from the US. I will say probably 4 for us too!

    Reply
    No numbers, actually. But the standard Scaneagle system, is one launcher/receiver, one control system and three air vehicles. The release by the navy today says they got two Scaneagles, so I am assuming it’s the numbers above

  6. “F/A-18D Hornets can be upgraded to F/A-18E Super Hornet”

    Err. I don’t even know what to say except facepalm berkali-kali.

  7. Sundra Anand – Sorry to burst your bubbles but the Fulcrums, Tigers and Aermacchi have got to go. For good.

    You can’t upgrade Legacy Hornet D (2 seaters) to Super Hornet E (1 seater). It’s a different machine altogether on the inside.

    Hawks have recently been upgraded.

    Reply
    Not really on the Hawks

  8. its not 1985 saga to 2018, its more like 2018 Altis. just take a look at the air intake. so to ruskie again? lest we forget mh17 ? Please, no

  9. @sundra anand

    we should convert the laksamana corvettes into ford-class aircraft carriers and the pendekars into icbm launchers.

  10. @Alpha Zulu
    What’s the alternative? Cut out Russia forever?

    I’m not saying “Go Russia” straightaway yeah. Just asking, how do we propose to tackle the Russian enigma?

  11. Sundra – ”Russia had expressed desire to upgrade the MiG-29N to MiG-29SM fighter jets back in 2017”

    We first received an upgrade offer way back in the 1990’s.
    RAC-MiG announced the offer at LIMA 1997 and again a few years later.

    Sundra – ”very affordable given Malaysia financial status at the moment.”

    ”Affordable” based on what factors/criteria? Cheaper to buy yes but in the long run how much will it cost to fly and support the type compared to Western equivalents? Look at the problems we had/have with the Fulcrums and MKMs. Problems not caused by the type itself but issues related to how the Russians go about doing business and the low MTBF/TBO of various parts/components.

    Sundra – ”Hopefully the F-5 Tiger fighter jets will be upgraded”

    Higher chance of elephants flying over the skies of Rawang. The F-5s are retired, no plans to upgrade them. Sure the RTAF sees a need to upgrade its F-5s but that doesn’t necessarily mean such a move would make sense for us.

    Sundra – ”The F/A-18D Hornets can be upgraded to F/A-18E Super Hornetm”

    Given that we’ve already upgraded our ‘D’s the next step logical/practical step would be an AESA radar. Bear in mind that what looks great on paper can differ with reality. When upgrading something various factors have to be looked at, not only technical and cost issues but also whether doing the upgrade provides a good return in investment.

  12. 1st the fulcrum then now Flankers, i am no from any staff college nor any ivy league grad. But these purchases are dragging TUDM down.
    Start anew streamline from 15 to 1 or 5 to 3 or whatever. There are ,Sweedish, French, British.
    Whatever happen the quest to the space now? stop the ego buy, defence purchases need to follow thru whoever is in power.
    its not a personal choice or preference. might as well we buy BUK system together with new ruskie agreement if there would be. To top the icing. Melayu mudah lupa

  13. @ alpha zulu

    Buy BUK system?

    Forgot what and who shot down the MH17?

    Melayu memang mudah lupa…

    Reply
    I think he was being cynical about it

  14. If we are going Russki again, let’s just go for the big kahuna. Let’s just get S-400 system. This will make Malaysia great again since China, and our regional neighbours will sweat bullets when facing with such awesomeness.

  15. “This will make Malaysia great again since China, and our regional neighbours will sweat bullets when facing with such awesomeness.”

    How is China going to sweat the S-400 or any system, unless we are actually going to shoot something down?

    The system has an impressive range and some ABM and cruise missile capability, but how capable is it without a mutually supporting IADS? This alone will not make Malaysia or even our air defence “great,” which would need investments in many things including fighters and lighter types so the fighters are not tied up doing other things.

    I also take issue with the “again” part. In all our history, have we ever had a sweat inducing capability, even in just one area?

  16. @AM
    We may be lacking in airframe numbers and those that we have are lacking in maintenance but that’s alright, with the S-400 in place with sufficient numbers, even China will think twice before they can confidently exert air superiority over Malaysian & disputed islands airspaces.

    And have we ever made any of them sweat? Yes we had, when our dear leader went and bought those Migs. That made everyone sit up and start take notice, it made news waves everywhere. We should go back to that era of #SayaRinduZamanTun

  17. Joe, i have nothing against Tun, but the purchase of these migs that what makes us.in this chua correctly label engima. Personally, i like the fucrum and Flankers, but if we need to go “eastern” fo all the way, do not incorporate western avionics and what have you. Its going to get messy.
    As for the S400, its an overkill, S300 would be enough,( out wet dream)
    If not just get BUK, Its proven against wide body jet witout6any chaff or flares or any jammer( im getthing out of hand here)! sorry im just piss for the downing and the Russian veto.

  18. @AlphaZulu
    Its the overkill factor that makes it terrifying for more advanced belligerent states (ie China).

    But I agree with you on THAT incident and the aftermath. I’m just more pissed at those who conveniently forget about it.

  19. Malaysia having S-400 means nothing to china as it already has them in service (it is the S-400 first export customer) and has plenty of time to study its strength and weaknesses. Coupled with China flying something undetectable like the J-20, those S-400s is just another target to be blown to smithereens.

    Missiles are of no use unless we are in an all out war, which if that happens means our diplomacy has failed big time. It cannot be used to escort and chase away foreign aircrafts, cannot be used to do deterrence fly past of foreign ships, cannot be used to check and confirm the identity of unknown planes and ships, cannot be used to patrol the air. So it is a luxury we cannot afford.

  20. Not to mention the US sanction against Russia for interference in crime Ukraine and US presidential poll. With the latest issue regarding the Ukraine navy, doubt we can deal with the Russian for the next 3 to 5 years

  21. @…
    I heard anecdotal cases, where the intruder has radar warning receivers, just turning on the radar and let them know they were being tracked is sufficient to make them turn away. I think it was the US that did that during Persian War 1 or 2.
    FYI, S-400 has capability to shoot down 5th gen planes, though at closer range than normal planes. Also with limited ABM capabilities as well.
    Anyways, that’s only once we normalise our relationship with Russia.

  22. “And have we ever made any of them sweat? Yes we had, when our dear leader went and bought those Migs.”

    The MiG provided only a defensive capability, point defence interceptor with a short combat radius, no air to ground capability and acquired in limited numbers. Until we received the much talked about BVR missiles years later, they flew with R-73s.

    Also note that we received the MiGs only a year after having ordered them (since we took over airframes intended for the Russians) and it would have taken time to operationalise them. Until we upgraded them about two years later, they flew with a rudimentary radar incapable of employing BVR weapons (since the Russians intended the MiGs as a GCI platform).

    If anything, our Hornets and Singapore’s F-16s were a more credible threat to anyone. Longer range conferred an offensive air combat capability (that was advanced for the time) and there was the ability to employ Harpoon and Maverick missiles and LGBs.

    In any case, Singapore had Mavericks and LGBs long before we got the Hornets, and could deliver them by both F-5 and F-16. They were displaying them publicly by 1998. I’d like to know when they got the air launched Harpoon, though. Singapore did not “sweat” the MiGs.

    “That made everyone sit up and start take notice, it made news waves everywhere.”

    What was publicly taken up in Singapore was concern that the MiG could carry BVRAAMs on paper, which we did not acquire until much later. Singapore declared that they would seek to match any new capability acquired in the region or seek the means to counter it. It was used to justify acquisition of the AMRAAM, which they did promptly order but had to keep in the US for a time due to US policy.

    “We should go back to that era of #SayaRinduZamanTun”

    The air force preferred the F/A-18 and if the cabinet had not overruled them, we would not be in this “situation” with the MiGs today.

    Decisions should be based on their contribution to effectiveness as a total force.

    We should advocate cooperation, confidence building and eventually joint capability building with our neighbours, not buying things for the sake of competition or to make them “sweat” even if we have the means.

    Credibility and regional trust and cooperation would make an outside party “sweat” more than your suggestion to buy the S-400.

    Competition and rivalry can take on lives of their own and detract from our (and our neighbour’s) proper priorities. Even if it remains purely rhetorical (as it did with Singapore) it gets in the way of good relations.

  23. @AM
    Credibility and regional trustworthiness were at the bottom during Madey’s rule. Did we care back then? Heck no! We preferred to make news waves and making them fear us, thus Singapore’s actions as you had mention.

    It was Madey’s bluff in acquiring those Migs (especially when it came from Russian AF intended stocks) but was soon called out once the armaments were made known. Again repeated, the MKM purchase pushed SG to go for F-35s instead of more F-15s and -16s.

    If we want to make a statement, then certainly do it with a big stick like what Madey did.

  24. I totaly agree with AM, we need the cooperation with our neigbours for a good defence posture against the like of China, i don’t think even US can stomach against China alone. But sadly Asean are only talkshop, when comes to affiliations towards the”big” brother, you can see the China influence.
    It was heartening to see RSAF and TUDM send their teams to LIMA and Singapore Airshow. It will be a very big looser for both countries to make each other as the boogeyman.
    There are an ongoing dicussion of who is better between Malaysia and Singapore. I find it very childish and useless point of discussion.
    Look at the bigger picture of asia theatre.
    Just a picture of imagination, after China declared close air traffic near China control Sprayly islands., and UN sanction an air policing priovided by TUDM Sukhois and RSAF F15sg with RAAF wedgetails and Superbug. Its a force that China would likely sweat. just my point for the cooporation of forces.

  25. @ joe

    “Again repeated, the MKM purchase pushed SG to go for F-35s instead of more F-15s and -16s”

    Malaysian MKM purchase was one of the reason Singapore bought F-15SG. To date they still have not bought any F-35s.

    Malaysian Migs was the reason singapore got its AMRAAMs (which now is also approved for Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia)

  26. @…
    Hmm… the MKMs came in 2007 while their F-15SGs came in 2008. Are you certain they only took 1 year to develop their plane to counter the MKMs? What I am made to understand was the SGs were primarily strikecraft variant intended to replace their A-4s. The F-35 buy was to negate MKMs superior air-to-air capability (vs F-15) and to counter any our MRCA buy in future (supposedly still at 4.5 gen plane).

    Agree on their AMRAAM buy was to counter the Migs. As I mentioned, Madey’s buys made waves compared to Najib’s despite the rojakness of having Western & Eastern hardware. It was a statement buy at best, but it sure made the regional neighbours sweat & some complained. Coupled with the cross border rhetoric so staple in his international relationship, I look forward in returning to that “exciting” time.

  27. “Again repeated, the MKM purchase pushed SG to go for F-35s instead of more F-15s and -16s.”

    Certainly not. We ordered the MKM in 2003, they publicly considered the F-15SG in 2003 and ordered it in 2005. If you say the will order the F-15 in response to the MKM ,that means they are waiting 15+ years and counting. Because they still haven’t placed an order.

    The point you still haven’t acknowledged is, if I were a neighbour, I would have been “sweating” the F-18s and all their air-to-air, air-to-ground and anti-shipping ordnance much more than the short legged, single role MiGs that for a time couldn’t do much without extensive support from ground radar. Likewise Singapore’s F-16s.

  28. joe “Hmm… the MKMs came in 2007 while their F-15SGs came in 2008. Are you certain they only took 1 year to develop their plane to counter the MKMs?”

    Singapore examined USAF F-15s as early as 1995. The evaluation took seven years, according to the official record. Officially, the Rafale came in second place in the evaluation, but you know as well as I that it never stood a chance.

    Even by your logic in the time frame, our MKM order 2003 would have given them two years to order the F-15, which they did 2005, not one year as you said. Our order may or may not have been the final impetus to make theirs, but the F-15 was already being evaluated long before then. If anything, the SAF’s budget and political support allows it to plan ahead.

    joe “What I am made to understand was the SGs were primarily strikecraft variant intended to replace their A-4s. ”

    When a country says it is replacing something with another, it is not to be taken at face value. Singapore once said the Formidable class frigates were replacing the missile gunboats- isn’t that a ridiculous comparison?

    If the F-15 had directly replaced the A-4, it would have left a 3 year gap between retirement (2005) and introduction (2008) in addition to time taken to attain IOC and FOC. Singapore would not have taken the risk.

    The A-4s were replaced by the later batches of F-16s, of which many were two seat Ds to take on a strike role. The although the capabiltiy gap is vast. Singapore maintained a large number of two seat TA-4S’es to employ PGMs in the strike role, although it has never been officially acknowledged. David Boey has hinted at this on more than one occasion, including in his latest post.

    It is more appropriate to say the F-15 replaced the F-5. F-15s were gradually brought home and introduced into an F-5 squadron, which simultaneously operated both types and retired the F-5s in phases.

  29. @A3
    Not sure if you’re implying waiting for -15 or -35. Anyways, SG can afford to wait for the F-35s. FYI, they are part of its development committee, no reason they haven’t ordered it.

    The point is, if you look at things chronologically, the F-18s came specifically without AMRAAM or Sparrow. We initially weren’t approved by US FMS committee to buy them. Hence whatever superior capability of Hornets is moot back then. As compared to the Migs, that had BVR capability and Russia has no problem selling R-77 BVR missiles to us. We were, officially, the first in region to have BVR capability.

  30. @ AM

    Dont bother replying to joe. He won’t own up to his mistakes even though it is clear for all to see. He still havent apologised to me on making stuff up about indonesian F-16 that I clearly did not say, not to mention plenty of previous comments that everyone can clearly read again and again here in malaysian defence.

  31. AFAIK this is the story of the jets

    Mig29 – interceptors with no BVR or PGM capability. We did not acquire RVVs until later.

    F18 – maritime and land strike aircraft valued for Harpoons and PGMs, no AMRAAMs. Offered by US post-MIGs to woo us away from Russian gear.

    Su30MKM – opportunity buy due to RuAF not having funds to purchase the 18 airframes and then-impoverished Russia accepting trade offsets. Came with significant array of weapons.

    A4SU – CAS support with ability to drop PGMs on friendly-marked targets. No integral laser designator. Sidewinders allow some competition against MIGs.

    F16 – low-end multirole combat aircraft.

    F15 – high-end multirole combat aircraft, capable of strike with IDF-influenced modifications.

    F35 – Fulfills requirement for stealth air, VTOL is a lovely bonus. Singapore joined Tier 1 development funding but pulled out due to long delays and development concerns. Now exploring re-entry, “coincidentally” or not after IDF received and approved of their F35Is.

    Way I see it, we’ve always been grabbing whatever we can when there are “promo sales”, while maintaining our non-alignedness. Whereas SG has a defined strategy – lean on their longtime allies to get the highest tech they can afford and buy. The only time they “goyang” is when the F35 program was in deep shit.

  32. @Chua, your assesment of RSAF F16 C,Ds block 52+ as a low end strike aircraft is quite an interesting anecdote, i shudder what would you catergorise F5E as..

  33. When did we pul out of f35? Lol. When did we “goyang” becuz of f35 was deep shit? Or why wld rsaf? The f35 program is more transparent then many other program. I not call the f16 low end..esp the upgred rsaf f16v. The default choice for replacing f5 and later f16 is the f35a snd f35b. This is a big procure exercise wif several batch order.The annucemen will come b4 the next financial year in apr 2019.

  34. “A4SU – CAS support with ability to drop PGMs on friendly-marked targets. No integral laser designator. Sidewinders allow some competition against MIGs.”

    Well, we know every single seat A-4SU had a Pave Penny laser spot tracker. It would seem the back seaters in the TA-4SUs were there to perform something more complicated.

    I suspect laser designators equipped some of them. A large number were acquired (to be precise, converted from single seaters) for combat purposes.

    You only need one per formation for buddy designation, and I speculate they operated as such with single seaters. In my reading this is in keeping with the SAF of the time- a willingness to acquire advanced technology and yet save money at the same time.

    “your assesment of RSAF F16 C,Ds block 52+ as a low end strike aircraft is quite an interesting anecdote”

    The F-16 as originally intended in the Lightweight Fighter program was the “low end” counterpart to the F-15- a light, daytime aircraft without BVR capability. Sparrow was not available on early Blocks.

    Today, an F-16 (or Rafale or Typhoon or Hornet) will do penetrating strike or air superiority as well as an F-15- aside from payload and range. If you don’t need it, don’t buy it. It should be noted that the F-15 was originally not “multirole” as well.

  35. @Alphazulu
    I only meant low-end in comparison with the F-15SG, did not mean to denigrate its capabilities which are indeed significant. I should have posted that earlier on it was the frontline fighter pre-F15 I guess. Certainly I don’t mean low end the way we Msians mean it, with Hawks and FA50s…

    @Tomahawk
    My mistake, SG was not a Level 1 partner but a “security consultant partner”, together with Israel, since the early 2000s.

    SG put its F35 tentative order/interest on hold in 2016, and hasn’t confirmed any plans to buy the F35 to date. This was during the height of the F35’s troubles. Buy decisions have been expected every year since then, with no news to date.

    Interest only appeared to resume after the IDF signalled acceptance of the F35I. Reading between the lines, it’s obvious some uncertainty was there. Just as it’s obvious that in the past year, SG media’s positive hype about the F35 has gone up even more than the previous criticism did before, which again, is an indicator of political nudges from above.

  36. Interesting asessment on mig with no bvr because as far as I can remember when we receive it in around 1995/96 we also got Aa10 a but from Ukraine. Is that not a BVR?

  37. @Chua
    F35 buy was never on hold. Sg mere waiting for 1)right F35 block to max gain and 2) right time to buy in terms of price to max number. Why is ter hurry to buy f35? In fact, RSAF official line is ter is no hurry. Ter is already 40 f15sg and 70 plus F16V..wit awacs..no compare in region. But it certain it will be coming mths as minister of defend says the decision will be annunce in coming mths. Tis in line with f35 operating wit f16v and f15sg by 2030. Unless rafale or tyhpoon got lasers the choice of f35 is obvious. With an anual bajet of close to 12 Usd billion, sg cld aford 2 chossy a bit.

    I tink u r see saf buy of equipmen thru malaysia lens. It less abt politik for us and more to max gain in term of joint ops within and outside saf and better equipmen to buy. Saf take a very long term approach.

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