Thales Vigile ESM for Lekiu class

SHAH ALAM: Genting Etika Sdn Bhd has been selected to supply, install, test and commissioned the new Electronic Support Measure (ESM) system for the RMN’s 23rd Frigate Squadron. The ships of the squadron are of course, KD Lekiu (30) and KD Jebat (29).

According to industry sources, the new ESM to be installed on board both ships is the Thales Vigile 100 Mark 2. The same ESM has also been selected for the six RMN’s LCS. Genting Etika is also the sub-contractor for the ESM package for the LCS, being built by Boustead Naval Shipyard at Lumut.

The contract to Genting Etika was made public only recently although the decision to award the tender to the company was made on Oct 26, 2015.

Thales Vigile brochure
Thales Vigile brochure

According to Thales : “ Vigile Light Weight (LW) is the latest generation Radar Electronic Support Measures (RESM) system from Thales. Drawing on Thales’ excellent pedigree in Naval EW systems and designed explicitly for small platforms, Vigile LW provides a real-time tactical view of the surrounding area – delivering effective situational awareness and threat warning.

Vigile LW’s impressive performance in complex littoral environments, combined with its low power consumption and compact, lightweight design, make it perfectly suited to small vessels. VIGILE is a class of modular ESM/ELINT systems, addressing present and future littoral and blue water operations.

As a primary sensor, Vigile is the key component of the EW suite. It is fully integrated into the Combat System and plays a vital part in the platforms situation awareness, self-protection and ELINT capabilities. In multi-platform, networked-enabled operations, it is a major contributor to enhanced operational awareness.

Drawing on THALES’ excellent pedigree in Naval EW systems, being incumbent supplier for both UK and French Navies, the VIGILE family is in service around the world, supplying many Navies with the capabilities required for effective situation awareness.

KD Lekiu launching a Sea Wolf SAM in an exercise in 2014. TLDM picture.
KD Lekiu launching a Sea Wolf SAM in an exercise in 2014. TLDM picture.

The publication of the award to Genting Etika marked the completion of the tender exercise for the 23rd Squadron, all published in June, last year. Malaysian Defence had reported previously that the Electro Optical Tracking System was awarded to Qiblatin Synergy Sdn Bhd with the Chess Dynamics Sea Eagle FCEO while DML Technologies Sdn Bhd (Terma) got the navigation radar contract.

Chess Dynamics Sea Eagle FCEO.
Chess Dynamics Sea Eagle FCEO.

The two other contracts were Kharisma International Sdn Bhd (Degaussing system) and ME & O Fleet Support Sdn Bhd (Ship Data Distribution System). Both systems selected remained unknown at the moment.

Yes perhaps I was wrong to say that Lekiu class was to undergo a SLEP. But with five sub-systems replaced, it is certainly not a routine refit programme. It is more like a modest mid-life update.

— Malaysian Defence

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