HMS Echo is the first of two multi-role hydrographic survey ships commissioned by the Royal Navy. With her sister ship, HMS Enterprise, they form the Echo class of survey vessels. She was built by Appledore Shipbuilders in Devon in 2002 and is the ninth Royal Navy vessel to carry the name.
Echo and Enterprise are the first Royal Navy ships to be fitted with azimuth thrusters. Both azimuth thrusters and the bow thruster can be controlled through the Integrated Navigation System by a joystick providing high manoeuvrability. Complete control and monitoring for power generation and propulsion, together with all auxiliary plant systems, tank gauging and damage control functions is provided through the Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS), accessible through workstations around the ship.
Echo and her sister ship are designed to conduct survey operations in support of submarines or amphibious operations. She can provide almost real-time tailored environmental information, and also has a secondary role as a Mine Countermeasure Tasking Authority platform, for which she is capable of embarking a dedicated Mine Counter Measures command team.
Information courtesy of wikipedia