THE first of Australia’s next-generation destroyers has completed its Sea Acceptance Trials off the coast of South Australia – the final step before being handed over to the Navy.
Hobart spent the past five weeks demonstrating its advanced on-board weapons capabilities, including 21 days at sea, where it conducted 20 platform system tests and 45 combat system tests.
AWD Alliance Program Manager Craig Bourke said the success of the Sea Acceptance Trials demonstrated the capacity of Australia’s defence industry to build and integrate ships to meet specific defence needs.
“Hobart’s sensors, weapons and communications systems have been put to the test by Royal Australian Air Force and civilian aircraft, Royal Australian Navy ships and helicopters through a complex series of simulated scenarios and battle space management,” he said.
“It also speaks volumes about the AWD Alliance’s close level of customer involvement and collaboration on every aspect of the project, laying the foundations for future defence projects in Australia.”
Work on Hobart commenced in January 2010 with its hull consolidation in March 2014, official launch in May 2015 and Builder’s Sea Trials in September 2016.
Its Sea Acceptance Trials involved close interactions with a range of fighter aircraft, surface ships and helicopters, as well as other civilian platforms in a range of simulated scenarios.
Hobart is 146.7 metres long, has a top speed of 28 knots (52km/h), a range of about 5000 nautical miles and room for more than 200 crew.
It carries a range of weapons, detection and electronic warfare systems onboard, which include an Aegis threat tracking system, SPQ Horizon Search Radar, 48 vertical launch missile cells, a 5" gun for coastal operations and two quad launchers of anti-ship HARPOON weapon systems.
The AWDs have also been equipped with anti-surface, anti-submarine and naval gunfire capabilities.