The Israeli Navy follows world leadership with a more modern, "stealth-focused" frigate in the INS Eilat (501) and its ilk. The class consists of three ships, the lead ship Eilat was launched in February 1993 and commissioned on 21 May 1994. As of 2016, she remains active in the Israeli Navy??.
She was built by the American Ingalls Shipbuilding Company (Northrop Grumman).
INS Eilat is classified as a frigate whose main role is a missile boat. As such, her armor is dominated by missile weapons, and she lives or dies depending on the speed and agility available to her.
Power is provided by a combined diesel or gas engine unit (CODOG), where one drive scheme can be selected over the other to minimise fuel consumption and maximise speed output (during a "braking" action it works). The diesel units are 2 MTU V12 1163 TB82 systems connected to a General Electric LM2500 gas turbine.
Powered by a gas turbine, the maximum possible speed is close to 33 knots and the range is up to 3,500 nautical miles.
Eilat had a crew of 74, including an air squadron of 10. It features a full-service helicopter hangar and helipad aft for the launch/recovery and maintenance of a Eurocopter Panther helicopter. The ship carries the Argon ST AN/SLQ-25 "Nixie" decoy system and an Elbit chaff missile launcher. Rafael offers HF Corner Reflectors/Wireless Jammers and Elisra NS-9003A/9005 Radar Warning Receivers (RWR).
Elta provides air search and fire control radar customization, while EDO provides its Type 795 sonar system. Rafael is in charge of the towed sonar array.
The weapon is guided by 8 x RGM-84 Harpoon anti-ship missiles. This is supported by 64 Barak-1 surface-to-air missiles protecting the main structure. For close range defense, the ship is equipped with a 20mm Phalanx Close-In Weapon System (CIWS) located above the foredeck.
Also carries a pair of triple Mark 32 torpedo tubes for underwater and maritime threats. All in all, INS Eilat can deal with almost any kind of threat approaching the ships or fleets it protects.
When completed, Eilat will have an overall length of 281 feet, a beam of 39 feet, and a draft of 10.4 feet. She displaces 1,075 tons under standard load and 1,227 tons under full load. The mast is only partially closed, adding some stealth features. The profile of the bridge complements the forward structure, and the funnel near the midship has a low profile and closed design.
In addition, the armrest section was kept to a minimum, giving the ship a flat appearance, further helping to reduce radar.
- Blue Water Operations
- Fleet Support
- direct attack
281 feet (85.65 m)
39 feet (11.89 m)
10.4 ft (3.17 m)
33 kn (38 mph)
3,511 nautical miles (4,040 miles; 6,502 km)
64 x Barak 1 Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM)
8 x RGM-84 Harpoon Anti-Ship Missile (ASM)
2 x 6 Mark 32 Surface Ship Torpedo Launchers (SVTT).
1 x 20mm Phalanx Close-In Weapon System (CIWS)
1 x Eurocopter Panther Helicopter