The Hobart-class is a class of three air warfare destroyers under construction for the Royal Australian Navy. The three new destroyers will replace the RAN’s four Adelaide-class frigates between 2016 and 2019. Fewer hulls with (theoretically) more functionality seems to be a global trend.
Aegis tower lifted onto Hobart
The main radar tower for the first of Australia’s three Air Warfare Destroyers, Hobart, has been successfully lifted into position.
Minister for Defence Senator David Johnston confirmed progress on the Hobart was well advanced, with the Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD) Alliance successfully lifting the Aegis tower onto the ship structure.
“The Aegis tower is a complex block on the AWD because of specific requirements to ensure accuracy in build and the effectiveness of the SPY radar’s operation,” Senator Johnston said.
Senator Johnston said the Aegis tower, constructed onsite at the ASC Shipyard at Techport, Adelaide, will house the four octagonal-shaped phased array panels of the Aegis AN/SPY-1D (V) search radar.
The achievement comes on the back of the significant milestone of the United States Navy’s recommendation that the Aegis Weapon System computer programs are ready for the on-board trial and activation of the combat system.
“The Aegis Weapon System is the nerve-centre of the destroyers and integrates a number of sensors and effectors to simultaneously detect, track and engage multiple air, surface and subsurface targets,” Senator Johnston said.
“The multi-function SPY radar is the main sensor for Aegis. The array faces send out beams of electromagnetic energy in all directions, providing a simultaneous and continuous search and tracking capability for hundreds of targets, providing the Royal Australian Navy with one of the most advanced warships in the world.”
The acceptance of the Aegis computer programs by the US Navy follows extensive testing last year by developer Lockheed Martin and the US Navy, with involvement of the Defence Materiel Organisation and Royal Australian Navy.