Australia receives its third and final Hobart-class air warfare destroyer

The Hobart-class air warfare destroyer, NUSHIP Sydney (42). Photo c/o Defpost.

The Australian Department of Defence (DOD) received the third and final Hobart-class AEGIS-equipped air warfare destroyer for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) during ceremonies at Osborne Naval Shipyard in Adelaide, South Australia on 28 February 2020.

The ship, which will be named as the HMAS Sydney (DDG-42) once it gets commissioned with the RAN, was formally received by Defense Minister Linda Reynolds, and the Chief of the RAN, Vice Adm. Michael Noonan. 

The ship was delivered several months earlier due to changes in construction process involving the ship’s storage for munitions to be used by its complimenting Sikorsky MH-60R Seahawk naval helicopter.

Commissioning of the ship is expected to take place in Sydney, New South Wales on 20 May 2020, which marks a milestone in the RAN as it goes closer to completing the replacement process for their six decommissioned Adelaide-class frigates that were previously the RAN’s primary air warfare surface assets, and completing the A$9 billion (US$6 billion) Air Warfare Destroyer programme that took 13 years to complete.

The last ship of the Adelaide-class, the HMAS Melbourne (FFG-05) was decommissioned on October 2019.

After commissioning, the future HMAS Sydney is expected to undertake a 6 month deployment to undergo Combat Systems Ship Qualification Trials with the US Navy in California, USA to enable to ship to reach full operational capability (FOC). 

The trials will include testing its combat systems, and live fire testing of ship’s RIM-66 SM-2 Standard Block 3B and RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles.
The Hobart-class are currently the RAN’s most capable surface warships, and are based on Spanish shipbuilder Navantia’s F100 surface warship design. They have an overall length of 147.2 metres, a maximum beam of 18.6 metres, and a draught of 5.17 metres. The ships have a full-load displacement 7,000 tonnes.

They are armed with a single Mk. 45 Mod. 4 5” naval gun, eight (8) Harpoon anti-ship cruise missiles in two quadruple cannisters, a 48-cell Mk. 41 vertical launch system (VLS) capable of firing the RIM-66 SM-2 Standard and RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles, two Mk.32 Mod. 9 twin torpedo launchers, a Phalanx Close-in Weapon System (CIWS), and two 25mm M242 Bushmaster autocannons mounted on Rafael Typhoon mounts.

[1] Navy Recognition
[2] Jane’s Defence Weekly

Australia receives its third and final Hobart-class air warfare destroyer Australia receives its third and final Hobart-class air warfare destroyer Reviewed by Asia Pacific Defense Journal on March 03, 2020 Rating: 5

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