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Irish Navy Ships
At the scene of the rescue operation, LE Eithne off the coast of Libya
#Refugees - LÉ Eithne of the Irish Naval Service writes the Journal.ie has rescued approximately 183 people yesterday (25 June) in the Mediterranean Sea, just north of the Libyan capital Tripoli. While on patrol at around 6 am, the LÉ…
The HPV LE Eithne yesterday rescued refugee migrants off Libya during Operation Pontus. Note the addition of the awning covering the HPV's heli-deck, to provide shelter to those rescued from the wind and sunny climate of the Mediterranean.
#RefugeeRescue- Following a request from the Italian Maritime Rescue Co-Ordination Centre, LÉ Eithne yesterday located and rescued a total of 135 migrants off Libya. The migrants were found on an inflatable craft approx 83Km off the north-west coast of Tripoli.…
Paul Kehoe refuses to comment on criticism from Italian authorities of LE ‘Niamh’ in not entering territorial waters of Libya during a refugee rescue operation in August 2015. Above a RIB dispatched from LE Samuel Beckett assists a rescue last year.
#MinisterDefends - Paul Kehoe Minister of State for Defence has said he was immensely proud of the Naval Service as the LE Eithne and its crew prepared to depart for the Mediterranean to assist in the rescue of refugees fleeing…
Naval Service flagship LE Eithne underway on exercise. The HPV is to depart today on its second deployment to assist in humanitarian mission in the Mediterranean
#EithneToMed - Patrol vessels of the Naval Service will be deployed for a third summer of humanitarian operations in the Mediterranean. As Independent.ie writes the Naval Service flagship, LE Eithne, has been assigned to begin the rotation of three ships in…
LÉ Niamh had informed the Italian coastguard it was too dangerous to proceed to the vessel as it was too close to the Libyan coast, according to extracts of recordings cited in evidence during a trial in Palermo, Sicily.
#DeploymentDelays - Tensions between a Naval Service patrol ship and the Italian coastguard writes The Irish Times, have emerged during a trial of three Libyan men accused of people trafficking in the Mediterranean. The exchanges have led to a call…
The HPV LE Eithne 'dressed overall' when docked in Dun Laoghaire recently on occasion of the Naval Service conferred 'Freedom of Entry to the County' by DLRCC. This was in recognition of the humanitarian role carried out by the navy in the Mediterranean where the HPV is set to return on such duties.
#MigrantMission - Flagship LE Eithne of the Naval Service is to be deployed again on humanitarian missions in the Mediterranean Sea, so to assist in the ongoing refugee migrant crisis off north Africa, writes Jehan Ashmore. The 1984 built Helicopter…
The twin funnels of the Naval Service flagship LE Eithne which is twinned with the adopted homeport of Dun Laoghaire. The heli-deck 'dressed overall' is clearly seen in this on board view with the backdrop of the town where Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council last month bestowed the 'Honourary of Freedom of Entry to the County'. This was in recognition of the significant humanitarian role of the Naval Service in the Mediterranean.
#AdoptedPorts – The ‘Freedom of Entry to the County’ bestowed to the Naval Service by Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council last month took place in the harbour where flagship LE Eithne is twinned with the town. So what about the rest…
The new ship will be the same class as LÉ Samuel Beckett (above), LÉ James Joyce and LÉ William Butler Yeats and the name George Bernard Shaw maintains the approach of naming this class of vessel after Irish literary greats.
The fourth Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) for the Irish Naval Service will bear the name of renowned Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw. The announcement was made during a traditional Keel Laying Ceremony, to mark a significant milestone being reached in…
Nicknamed ‘the last of the Mohicans’, the LÉ Aisling set the bar under its first captain, the ‘Sheriff’, Lieut Cdr Peadar McElhinney.
#AislingAuction - The last ship built for the Irish Naval Service at Verolme Cork Dockyard is to go under the hammer at auction in Cork next month some nine months after it was decommissioned from service. As the Irish Times…
Naval Service OPV90 class L.E. James Joyce was one of three ships tasked in SAR missions for refugees and migrants in the Mediterranean in the year of 2016
#NavalReview - The Defence Forces in the year of 2016 have been tasked by the Government to play a central role in the 1916 Centenary Commemorative programme. Notwithstanding the ceremonial activities performed during 2016, Óglaigh na hÉireann maintained operations, contributing…
Bosun Gerry Dore is welcomed home yesterday by wife Geraldine and his daughters and mother-in-law at Haubowline Naval Base, Cork Harbour
#BeckettHome - In time for Christmas with an arrival home writes The Irish Examiner. Hugs, kisses, and a few tears of joy shed as the crew of the LÉ Samuel Beckett disembarked to be greeted by loved ones yesterday after…
A RIB of LE Samuel Beckett during a rescue mission. Speaking at the award ceremony An Taoiseach Enda Kenny said ‘This is a special tribute that endorses the efforts and sacrifices our personnel make’.
#EuropeAward - The Irish Defences Forces were presented The European of the Year award writes The Irish Times. The award was given by the European Movement Ireland in recognition of the Defence Forces’ contribution to international peacekeeping and humanitarian work.…
The Naval Service aided the rescue of migrants from a rubber vessel off Libya this morning
#Navy - The Naval Service’s LÉ Samuel Beckett assisted in rescuing 140 migrants from the Mediterranean off Libya this morning (Saturday 3 December), as The Irish Times reports. Food, water and medical treatment were provided to the people who were…
Minister Paul Kehoe inspects a Naval Service guard of honour during the new Defence Forces medal award ceremony held in Dun Laoghaire Harbour at the weekend.
#NewMedals – New International Operational Service Medals were presented to members of the Defence Forces by Minister Paul Kehoe in Dun Laoghaire Harbour at the weekend, writes Jehan Ashmore. The medals are in recognition of their humanitarian missions overseas which…
Naval Service RIBS at the scene in the Mediterranean were more than 500 migrant/refugees were rescued from rubber boats off the Libyan coast
#MigrantsRescue - LÉ Samuel Beckett located and rescued a total of 508* migrants from four separate rubber vessels in the early hours of yesterday morning. The search and rescue operation according to the Naval Service took place 50 nautical miles…
Night time scene as a RIB crew on Friday assist in the ongoing humanitarian search and rescue missions in the Mediterranean Sea
#MigrantRescues – Two search and rescue missions (SAR) tasked by LÉ Samuel Beckett last week saved almost 100 migrant refugees off the Libyan coast. According to the Naval Service the most recent SAR took place on Friday night following a…

The Irish Navy Fleet

The Naval Service is the State's principal seagoing agency. The Naval Service operates jointly with the Army and Air Corps.

The fleet comprises one Helicopter Patrol Vessel (HPV), three Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPV), two Large Patrol Vessel (LPV) and two Coastal Patrol Vessels (CPV). Each vessel is equipped with state of the art machinery, weapons, communications and navigation systems.

LÉ EITHNE P31

LE Eithne was built in Verlome Dockyard in Cork and was commissioned into service in 1984. She patrols the Irish EEZ and over the years she has completed numerous foreign deployments.

Type Helicopter Patrol Vessel
Length 80.0m
Beam 12m
Draught 4.3m
Main Engines 2 X Ruston 12RKC Diesels6, 800 HP2 Shafts
Speed 18 knots
Range 7000 Nautical Miles @ 15 knots
Crew 55 (6 Officers)
Commissioned 7 December 1984

LÉ ORLA P41

L.É. Orla was formerly the HMS SWIFT a British Royal Navy patrol vessel stationed in the waters of Hong Kong. She was purchased by the Irish State in 1988. She scored a notable operational success in 1993 when she conducted the biggest drug seizure in the history of the state at the time, with her interception and boarding at sea of the 65ft ketch, Brime.

Type Coastal Patrol Vessel
Length 62.6m
Beam 10m
Draught 2.7m
Main Engines 2 X Crossley SEMT- Pielstick Diesels 14,400 HP 2 Shafts
Speed 25 + Knots
Range 2500 Nautical Miles @ 17 knots
Crew 39 (5 Officers)

LÉ CIARA P42

L.É. Ciara was formerly the HMS SWALLOW a British Royal Navy patrol vessel stationed in the waters of Hong Kong. She was purchased by the Irish State in 1988. She scored a notable operational success in Nov 1999 when she conducted the second biggest drug seizure in the history of the state at that time, with her interception and boarding at sea of MV POSIDONIA of the south-west coast of Ireland.

Type Coastal Patrol Vessel
Length 62.6m
Beam 10m
Draught 2.7m
Main Engines 2 X Crossley SEMT- Pielstick Diesels 14,400 HP 2 Shafts
Speed 25 + Knots
Range 2500 Nautical Miles @ 17 knots
Crew 39 (5 Officers)

LÉ ROISIN P51

L.É. Roisin (the first of the Roisín class of vessel) was built in Appledore Shipyards in the UK for the Naval Service in 2001. She was built to a design that optimises her patrol performance in Irish waters (which are some of the roughest in the world), all year round. For that reason a greater length overall (78.8m) was chosen, giving her a long sleek appearance and allowing the opportunity to improve the conditions on board for her crew. 

Type Long Offshore Patrol Vessel
Length 78.84m
Beam 14m
Draught 3.8m
Main Engines 2 X Twin 16 cly V26 Wartsila 26 medium speed Diesels
5000 KW at 1,000 RPM 2 Shafts
Speed 23 knots
Range 6000 Nautical Miles @ 15 knots
Crew 44 (6 Officers)
Commissioned 18 September 2001

LÉ NIAMH P52

L.É. Niamh (the second of the Róisín class) was built in Appledore Shipyard in the UK for the Naval Service in 2001. She is an improved version of her sister ship, L.É.Roisin

Type Long Offshore Patrol Vessel
Length 78.84m
Beam 14m
Draught 3.8m
Main Engines 2 X Twin 16 cly V26 Wartsila 26 medium speed Diesels
5000 KW at 1,000 RPM 2 Shafts
Speed 23 knots
Range 6000 Nautical Miles @ 15 knots
Crew 44 (6 Officers)
Commissioned 18 September 2001

LÉ SAMUEL BECKETT P61

LÉ Samuel Beckett is an Offshore Patrol Vessel built and fitted out to the highest international standards in terms of safety, equipment fit, technological innovation and crew comfort. She is also designed to cope with the rigours of the North-East Atlantic.

Type Offshore Patrol Vessel
Length 90.0m
Beam 14m
Draught 3.8m
Main Engines 2 x Wärtsilä diesel engines and Power Take In, 2 x shafts, 10000kw
Speed 23 knots
Range 6000 Nautical Miles @ 15 knots
Crew 44 (6 Officers)

LÉ JAMES JOYCE P62

LÉ James Joyce is an Offshore Patrol Vessel and represents an updated and lengthened version of the original RÓISÍN Class OPVs which were also designed and built to the Irish Navy specifications by Babcock Marine Appledore and she is truly a state of the art ship. She was commissioned into the naval fleet in September 2015. Since then she has been constantly engaged in Maritime Security and Defence patrolling of the Irish coast. She has also deployed to the Defence Forces mission in the Mediterranean from July to end of September 2016, rescuing 2491 persons and recovering the bodies of 21 deceased

Type Offshore Patrol Vessel
Length 90.0m
Beam 14m
Draught 3.8m
Main Engines 2 x Wärtsilä diesel engines and Power Take In, 2 x shafts, 10000kw
Speed 23 knots
Range 6000 Nautical Miles @ 15 knots
Crew 44 (6 Officers)

LÉ WILLIAM BUTLER YEATS P63

L.É. William Butler Yeats was commissioned into the naval fleet in October 2016. Since then she has been constantly engaged in Maritime Security and Defence patrolling of the Irish coast. She has also deployed to the Defence Forces mission in the Mediterranean from July to October 2017, rescuing 704 persons and recovering the bodies of three deceased.

Type Offshore Patrol Vessel
Length 90.0m
Beam 14m
Draught 3.8m
Main Engines 2 x Wärtsilä diesel engines and Power Take In, 2 x shafts, 10000kw
Speed 23 knots
Range 6000 Nautical Miles @ 15 knots
Crew 44 (6 Officers)

LÉ GEORGE BERNARD SHAW P64

LÉ George Bernard Shaw (pennant number P64) is the fourth and final ship of the P60 class vessels built for the Naval Service in Babcock Marine Appledore, Devon. The ship was accepted into State service in October 2018, and, following a military fit-out, commenced Maritime Defence and Security Operations at sea.

Type Offshore Patrol Vessel
Length 90.0m
Beam 14m
Draught 3.8m
Main Engines 2 x Wärtsilä diesel engines and Power Take In, 2 x shafts, 10000kw
Speed 23 knots
Range 6000 Nautical Miles @ 15 knots
Crew 44 (6 Officers)

Ship information courtesy of the Defence Forces

About the Irish Navy

The Navy maintains a constant presence 24 hours a day, 365 days a year throughout Ireland’s enormous and rich maritime jurisdiction, upholding Ireland’s sovereign rights. The Naval Service is tasked with a variety of roles including defending territorial seas, deterring intrusive or aggressive acts, conducting maritime surveillance, maintaining an armed naval presence, ensuring right of passage, protecting marine assets, countering port blockades; people or arms smuggling, illegal drugs interdiction, and providing the primary diving team in the State.

The Service supports Army operations in the littoral and by sea lift, has undertaken supply and reconnaissance missions to overseas peace support operations and participates in foreign visits all over the world in support of Irish Trade and Diplomacy.  The eight ships of the Naval Service are flexible and adaptable State assets. Although relatively small when compared to their international counterparts and the environment within which they operate, their patrol outputs have outperformed international norms.

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