Australia — State-of-the-art radars delivered for AWDs

Min­is­ter for Defence Materiel Jason Clare announced the arrival in Ade­laide of the first of three state of the art hori­zon-search radars for the Hobart Class Air War­fare Destroy­ers (AWD).

Source: Aus­tralian Depart­ment of Defence
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“The AN/SPQ-9B radar is locat­ed on the main mast of the destroy­ers and can track over 200 radar con­tacts simul­ta­ne­ous­ly with a high lev­el of accu­ra­cy”, Mr Clare said.

“It will be used to search and track tar­gets imme­di­ate­ly above the sea sur­face, such as low-fly­ing air­craft, unmanned aer­i­al vehi­cles and mis­siles.

“The Roy­al Aus­tralian Navy is the first Navy out­side of the Unit­ed States to receive the radar which is man­u­fac­tured by US com­pa­ny Northrop Grum­man.

“It was pur­chased by the Aus­tralian Gov­ern­ment through the Unit­ed States For­eign Mil­i­tary Sales pro­gram at a cost of around $10 mil­lion each.”

“This is an impor­tant mile­stone in the AWD Project, which involves the con­struc­tion of three new war­ships.

“The new ships are based on a proven design from the Span­ish Navy. When com­plete, the AWD will be one of the most capa­ble war­ships of its size in the world.

“Each AWD will have anti-air, anti-sub­ma­rine and anti-sur­face war­fare capa­bil­i­ty as well as the abil­i­ty to embark a heli­copter at sea.

Con­struc­tion of the AWDs involves the fab­ri­ca­tion of 90 sep­a­rate steel blocks, 30 for each ship, as well as three addi­tion­al sonar blocks at a num­ber of ship­yards in Aus­tralia and over­seas.

These blocks will be brought togeth­er by ASC at the South Aus­tralian Government’s Com­mon User Facil­i­ty in Ade­laide where the ships are being assem­bled.

Five blocks have already been deliv­ered from Williamstown ship­yard in Mel­bourne, with a fur­ther 12 planned to be deliv­ered this year from ship­yards in Williamstown, New­cas­tle and Spain includ­ing a sonar block for HMAS Hobart (III).

So far this year the gun soft­ware and gun weapon sys­tems have been received, and the com­bat sys­tem is cur­rent­ly being test­ed in the Unit­ed States.

By the end of 2013, 34 more blocks are due to be com­plet­ed, work will have begun on the third ship HMAS Syd­ney (V) and tri­als of crew train­ing will have com­menced.

Press release
Min­is­te­r­i­al Sup­port and Pub­lic Affairs,
Depart­ment of Defence,
Can­ber­ra, Aus­tralia