Wednesday, 20 December 2017


During our recent cruise, the Dutch frigate HNLMS Tromp was moored behind Aurora on the first day of our stay in Copenhagen. As a result I was able to some excellent photographs of her.

HNLMS Tromp (F803) is the second of four De Zeven Provinciën-class frigates to enter service with the Royal Netherlands Navy. She was laid down in 1999, launched in 2001, and commissioned in 2003.

Her characteristics are:
  • Displacement: 6,050 tonnes (full load)
  • Dimensions:
    • Length: 473.2' (144.24m)
    • Beam: 61.7' (18.8m)
    • Draft: 17.0' (5.18m)
  • Propulsion: Combined diesel and gas turbine main engines (2 × Wärtsilä 16 V26 marine diesel engines, each producing 4.2MW (5,600hp) and 2 × Rolls Royce Spey SM 1C gas turbines, each producing 18.5MW (24,800hp) driving 2 × 5-bladed controllable pitch propellers; 4 × Wärtsilä-Deutz D620 V12 diesel-generators, each producing 1,680kW (2,250hp)
  • Speed: 30 knots
  • Complement: 174 (plus an additional 26 when used as a flagship)
  • Armament:
    • 1 × Oto Melara 127mm/54 dual-purpose gun;

    • 1 × Goalkeeper CIWS (close-in weapons system);
    • 40-cell Mk.41 vertical launch system containing 32 × SM-2 IIIA surface-to-air missiles and 32 quadpacked × Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles;
    • 8 × Harpoon anti-ship missiles;
    • 2 × twin Mk.32 Mod 9 torpedo launchers with Raytheon Mk.46 Mod 5 torpedoes
  • Sensors:
    • Thales Nederland SMART-L long-range air and surface surveillance radar;
    • Thales Nederland APAR air and surface search, tracking and guidance radar (I band);
    • DECCA NAV navigation radar;
    • Thales Nederland Scout (Low Probability of Intercept) surface search/navigation radar;
    • Thales Nederland Sirius IRST long-range infrared surveillance and tracking system;
    • Thales Nederland Mirador optical surveillance and tracking system;
    • Atlas Elektronik DSQS-24C hull-mounted sonar;
    • Mk.XII IFF system

  • Aircraft: 1 x NH-90 helicopter

The ship is named for two famous Dutch admirals:
  • Luitenant-Admiraal Maarten Tromp, who is reputed to have attached a broom to his mast after his victory at the Battle of Dungeness to symbolise the fact that he had swept the English from the sea
  • Luitenant-Admiraal-Generaal Sir Cornelis Tromp, Bt, son of the above. He commanded Dutch forces during the three Anglo-Dutch Wars and Danish forces during the Scanian War.


  1. Apparently the story about the broom has been somewhat exaggerated in the telling. I read somewhere that it was the Dutch habit in the days of Maarten Tromp, to advertise the sale of imported stuff, including ships, by posting a broom on a mast. Tromp was merely advertising the sale of his prizes.

    Makes a good yarn, though.

    1. Archduke Piccolo,

      It's a great story, regardless, and made famous by Peter Dawson's song.

      This Tromp was flying a Christmas tree from its 'foremast'; I wonder what that signifies?

      All the best,


  2. Replies
    1. Conrad Kinch,

      What a difference a vowel makes!

      All the best,


    2. Had to laugh. But the front names can make a difference, too. Maarten and Cornelius. Names to conjure with.

    3. Archduke Piccolo,

      The thing that sticks in my mind is that at some time in the future the US Navy is probably going to end up with an aircraft carrier called USS Donald Trump!

      All the best,


  3. Liked the Christmas tree - In my silted up old river wharf area of the West Country, according to old photographs, it was traditional to hoist a small fir tree onto the very top mast at Christmas time on sailing ships.

    1. MIN ManofTin,

      Thanks for that information. I'd heard of some Royal Navy ships doing this, but never actually seen it for myself.

      All the best,


  4. I am sure somewhere in the former Eastern Block an military official is looking at this and trying to decide whether or not to add the "Xmas Tree" possible anti radar device(?) to the Armament/Defensive Characteristics of Dutch Tromp Frigates. He might be mislead into thinking NATO is developing new "green" ECM capabilities ;)

    1. Geordie an Exiled FoG,

      I can envisage that happening ... and it triggering a US response that more fir trees should be planted to ensure that no 'tree capability gap' develops.

      All the best,



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