Australien — More Super Hornets to arrive in July

The next stage in Air Force’s air com­bat capa­bil­i­ty is about to occur. RAAF is plan­ning to tran­sit six more F/A-18F Super Hor­nets from the Unit­ed States to RAAF Amber­ley in ear­ly July.

Min­is­ter for Defence, Sen­a­tor John Faulkn­er, said a detach­ment of RAAF air­crew and main­te­nance per­son­nel from No 1 Squadron is cur­rent­ly con­duct­ing work-ups with the brand new air­craft at Naval Air Sta­tion Lemoore in Cal­i­for­nia.

“The detach­ment is com­plet­ing com­pre­hen­sive flight test­ing which includes up to 96 hours of test and eval­u­a­tion fly­ing and two weeks of Elec­tron­ic War­fare flight tri­als from Lemoore,” Sen­a­tor Faulkn­er said.

“Anoth­er key task involves work­ing with an air-to-air tanker con­duct­ing day and night refu­elling flights to ensure we are ready for the flight to Aus­tralia.”

“When these jets arrive short­ly, close to half of Australia’s twen­ty four Super Hor­nets will be based at Amber­ley, and Defence will be work­ing toward the next mile­stone of achiev­ing Ini­tial Oper­at­ing Capa­bil­i­ty by the end of 2010,” Sen­a­tor Faulkn­er said.

The first five Super Hor­nets were wel­comed at RAAF Amber­ley on 26 March this year. Since then, they have been con­duct­ing famil­iari­sa­tion train­ing in Queens­land.

The Super Hor­net is a high­ly capa­ble, bat­tle proven, mul­ti-role air­craft that has already proved its effec­tive­ness in ser­vice with the US Navy. Its flex­i­bil­i­ty will enhance Australia’s air com­bat capa­bil­i­ty, through mar­itime and land strike, sup­pres­sion of ene­my air defence, recon­nais­sance, air-to-air com­bat and close air sup­port. The F/A-18Fs are a bridg­ing capa­bil­i­ty through Air Force’s tran­si­tion to the Joint Strike Fight­er.

“The Super Hor­net project has been a fine exam­ple of team work. Reach­ing this stage of the project on time and on bud­get has been due to the great part­ner­ship between the Roy­al Aus­tralian Air Force, Defence Materiel Organ­i­sa­tion, Unit­ed States Navy, The Boe­ing Com­pa­ny and their indus­try part­ners, Gen­er­al Elec­tric, Northrop Grum­man and Raytheon,” Sen­a­tor Faulkn­er said.

Details of the sec­ond tranche’s arrival at Amber­ley will be released clos­er to the date.

By the end of 2011, all twen­ty four of Australia’s Super Hor­nets are sched­uled to be in Amber­ley.

Media con­tacts:
Col­in Camp­bell (John Faulkn­er): 02 6277 7800 or 0407 787 181
Defence Media 02 6127 1999 or 0408 498 664

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