The Ardiente and Valeroso class destoyers are British-designed, Latin American made guided missile destroyers. Intended to be a class of eight, only four were completed before the program was terminated due to a British embargo in 1978 (which was lifted in 1984). The Valeroso and Ardiente class destroyers are marginally based on the British Type 82 Destroyer. The Ardiente (Ardent) class destroyers are oriented towards anti-air warfare, while the Valeroso (Valiant) class undertake the anti-submarine warfare role. They are equipped with a mix of Australian, French and American systems including Standard, Ikara, and Exocet.
The AEC Valeroso was launched in 1971, and completed in 1974. One more followed each year, two Valeroso class and two Ardiente class. The ships are large, displacing over 8200 tons with a length of 170m. The ships are steam powered, with oil fired boilers. The high speed and relatively heavy armament of these ships lead some to call them cruisers. They are roughly comprable to the American Belknap class cruiser. The main criticisms of these ships are their large manning requirements (about 500 men compared to 250 or 320 in Hercules class destroyers), and their steam power plants, which are less efficient than gas turbines, and more maintenance intensive.
The ships have plenty of life left in them, however the Valeroso class ships' Ikara system is become somewhat difficult to support. Option being examined include straight removal of Ikara, replacement with a Vertical Launcher (mainly for VL-ASROC), or FMA supporting Ikara independently. Ikara is still regarded as a valuable weapon system.
Construction work on a fifth ship began in 1976 but stopped in 1979. The hull was broken up in 1983. A thaw in Ango-Latin American relations in the mid-1980s meant that the ship could have been completed, however the Navy at that time (mainly due to manning) preferred the British Type 42 destroyer, and seven of these were constructed.
The Ardiente and Valeroso class destroyers, while old, are highly respected (or feared) surface combatants, and give fine service to the Confederate States of Latin America.
|Displacement||8,200 tons full load|
|Machinery||Four 1200 psi (8300 kPa) boilers, two geared steam turbines, two shafts. 85,000 shp (63,384 kW)|
|Aircraft||2 Agusta-Sikorsky ASH-3D Sea King, or Agusta-Bell AB-212ASW|
Ardiente class destroyer
Valeroso class destroyer
|General: Confederate States of Latin America, Economy of the ECAL, Justice and Law in the ECAL, President Michelle Bachelet, Presidency|
|Political: Partido Republicano Constitucional, Partido Laborista Socialista, Partido de la Democracia Cristiana|
|Military: Fuerzas Armadas, Armada, Ejercito, Fuerza Aerea, Infanteria de Marina, Guardia Nacional|
|Military Aircraft: FMA SAIAL 90, A-4AL Fightinghawk|
|Armoured Vehicles: TLAM Medium Tank, TLAP Main Battle Tank|
|Warships: Ship Profiles, Ardiente and Valeroso class destoyers|