In the nineteenth century, frigates with steam propulsion systems were made, which drastically increased their role in the navies around the world. However, as their applications increased, the term frigate was substituted by the terms battleship and destroyer. During the Second World War, some of the most advanced frigates were used in war applications such as anti-submarine vessels, minesweepers, minelayers, and merchant ships escorts.
Some of the modern frigates are also used as anti-aircraft vessels and have diesel, steam, and even nuclear propulsion systems. They are also equipped with various forms of offensive or defensive missiles and are called Guided Missile Frigates. A few of the most recent frigates are equipped with Stealth technology, which allows them to go undetected in an enemy’s radar system. In many navies, frigates are also known by the term destroyer.
Although known as destroyers in many parts of the world, frigates are smaller than cruisers but larger than actual destroyers, which are small yet tough warships usually made for their high speed. Presently destroyers are used around the world as anti-submarine vessels. However, although modern frigates are less armed than destroyers, they do carry a range of missiles and torpedoes.
Thus, frigates are large warships in small packages with characteristics such as high speed, excellent stability, and huge weaponry carrying capacity.