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Author: Subject: RAN part 2
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[*] posted on 13-3-2020 at 11:29 AM


Quote: Originally posted by bug2  
This guy Johnston seems to be some rich dude who likes to jab away at anything that takes his fancy. His website is here, called Submarines for Australia (!):

https://submarinesforaustralia.com.au/reports/submarines-for...


I believe the correct description is 'rich and therefore entitled dude'




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[*] posted on 13-3-2020 at 09:58 PM


PMB Defence signs subcontracts with Naval Group to design storage batteries for Attack-class submarines

Posted On Friday, 13 March 2020 09:14

Australian company PMB Defence Pty Ltd and Greek company Systems Sunlight S.A. have signed subcontracts with Naval Group Australia to design the main storage batteries for the Attack class submarines through a competitive process.


Attack class SSG (Picture source: Royal Australian Navy)

Contracts for the design of the Main Storage Batteries Stages 1 and 2 for the Attack Class submarines have been awarded, another major milestone for the program.

PMB Defence, based in Adelaide and Sunlight, based in Greece have been contracted to provide design, prototyping and qualification activities for the Main Storage Batteries. Both organisations will provide Naval Group with the data necessary to select one as the preferred MSB design for the Attack Class program in 2022.

The Main Storage Batteries are responsible for supplying power to the propulsion system of the submarine and to other equipment on-board the ship. They directly impact the safety of the submarine when diving, making them a critical piece of equipment for the platform.

Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC said the design of the main storage batteries is one of the “Top 5” critical equipment items to the overall design of the Attack class submarine.

The Attack-class submarine is a future class of submarines for the Royal Australian Navy based on the Shortfin Barracuda proposal by French shipbuilder Naval Group (formerly known as DCNS) to replace the Collins-class submarines. The class will enter service in the early 2030s with construction extending into the late 2040s to 2050. The Program is estimated to cost $50 billion and will be the largest, and most complex, defence acquisition project in Australian history.

Further contracts will be awarded for the manufacture of the batteries in Australia following selection of the preferred battery design.
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[*] posted on 17-3-2020 at 03:24 PM


‘You need two to tango’: Naval Group CEO Hervé Guillou on business in Europe and Down Under

By: Sebastian Sprenger   16 hours ago


CEO of Naval Group Herve Guillou exits the French nuclear submarine Suffren during its official launch at the French naval base on July 12, 2019, in Cherbourg, northwestern France. (Ludovic Marin/AFP via Getty Images)

COLOGNE, Germany — Hervé Guillou, who took the helm at France’s shipbuilder Naval Group in 2014, will retire from the company later this month due to an age limit that comes with the job. He made consolidation in Europe’s naval sector a key tenet of his tenure, though there has been little movement so far other than Naval Group’s cooperation with Italian shipyard Fincantieri and the resulting Naviris joint venture.

With fears of demand drying up at home, Naval Group made an aggressive sales push across the world, perhaps most notably with the multibillion-dollar Australian Attack-class submarine program. The project received some criticism in Australia in recent months, though Guillou brushed it aside and said the Australian government remains committed to the program.

Guillou spoke to Defense News’ European editor, Sebastian Sprenger, by phone on March 10 about the international marketplace and industrial cooperation.

With talk of a need for the European naval industry to consolidate, to what extent do you view Naval Group as a European company?

We are the European leader of naval defense and as a strategic pillar we are willing to contribute to the building of the Europe of defense. We could not deliver the value to our shareholders if we didn't have a reasonable balance between our national programs like Barracuda or FDI frigates, coupled with a number of significant programs for export. Like Dassault Aviation, we need about 40-60 percent of value added for export if we want to maintain competences and competitiveness on the full scope of our offer.

In our effort for internationalization, we have two streams. One is direct sales; we have established 10 new companies outside France. We have seven new customers in seven new countries such as Belgium, Netherlands, Argentina and Romania. That completely changed our international base. The second aspect is Europe, starting with the joint venture with Fincantieri. We have always said other companies can join. The process is slow, but we are absolutely clear that consolidation is needed if we want European sovereignty to be preserved.

We are on the way. Naviris is one step. I hope there will be others. But it’s a slow move, particularly in the naval industry because of the political visibility and because of the huge differences between the operational concepts of the European navies. Today, the closest to the French Navy would be the British Navy. But the British are on another agenda after Brexit [Britain’s exit from the European Union]. On the submarine side, our closest partner in terms of worldwide, expeditionary capacity for oceanic operations are the Netherlands. On surface ships, because we have done Horizon and FREMMs together, it is Fincantieri.

Today, Italy and the Netherlands are the likely first steps in our European road map, but others are welcome to join.

In late 2018, you said you would make an overture to Germany’s ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems for some kind of cooperation agreement once the Australian submarine deal is settled. Did that happen?

No. You need two to tango. I don’t know yet what is the consensus — or not — between the ThyssenKrupp leadership, government policies and parliament. It’s not for me to interfere in that. I have been sending clear and open messages, and [Fincantieri CEO] Giuseppe Bono did the same, publicly. But today, we have no real answer.

Germany and France have a land project together, the European battle tank, and two air projects, the Eurodrone and the Future Combat Air System. Do you think a naval project besides those is feasible?

I think you cannot copy the aircraft or the land model to the naval sphere. Again, there are no likely bilateral or trilateral programs with Germany in the naval business because Germany has very different operational needs for their Navy than France or Italy. Their submarines are more coastal submarines, geared toward the Baltic Sea. Their surface ships — for example, when you look at the MKS 180 — are of a total different specification than the FREMM or the FDI, which are heavy, weaponized, combat-focused frigates.

The Germans have no need for anything like an aircraft carrier, and they are not going to build SSNs [attack submarines]. So today, in my view, if we do something with Germany, it would be more of an industry agenda, as we did first with Italy, to be able to add and find synergies in our international presence, rather than relying on a bilateral program. And the way our industry consolidates is very different.

But we have a survival issue in industry, to be able to find volumes, procurement synergies, export opportunities among ourselves and being mindful that the real competitor is more China and Russia and not Germany, Italy or the Netherlands.

We continue to explain that, but we need to be patient. I understand well where the Germans come from. With three German yards — TKMS, Lürssen, and Blohm and Voss — it’s more fragmented and difficult for them.

What about the argument that it would be hard to mix a former state-owned company like Naval Group with shipyards who don't share that kind of heritage?

That is totally wrong, and it’s totally badmouthing. We are a company with a private status and an independent board even if we have a French government shareholder. Governance guidelines apply to Naval Group like they apply to all French industry in the market. The government does not interfere with the social interests of the company, and my board would not accept it. The same applies to the false charge that we get government subsidies. It is totally untrue. If it was the case, everybody could file claims against us in the European courts.

Some of your competitors have argued that Naval Group is too diversified to be compatible with firms that do nothing but shipbuilding.

Again, this is not true. Diversification has been put under control. During my time at Naval Group, I closed two big projects in the nuclear area, which were losing money. I have restricted hugely the area of marine energy production, concentrating on offshore wind and geothermal. We are 98 percent focused on naval business. This is not a good subject for our competitors to argue about.

What are your expectations of the new French aircraft carrier and Naval Group's role in the program?

Naval Group’s role is very clear: We shall be the prime contractor for such program. We are the only one capable of designing and integrating such a warship, which includes the concurrent engineering of the combat system and of the platform, including aircraft, drones, the new electromagnetic catapult from the U.S. — more than 200 functions in all.

The hull will be built in St. Nazaire, at Chantiers de l’Atlantique, where the big dock for cruise ships will be used.

We expect a decision on the future aircraft carrier program sometime this year. I cannot predict the exact timing, but I am optimistic that the decision will be made this year. We have delivered to DGA [the French defense procurement agency] our preliminary studies, our cost-capability tradeoffs; we have given a lot of details as well on the timing of the possible entry into service of such a new aircraft carrier. The government now has all the information they asked to make their decision.

Naval Group has been criticized in Australia about the Attack submarine program recently. Did that catch you by surprise?

I must say I’m more disappointed than surprised. We have very, very strong support from our customer and from the Australian government. We know where these attacks come from, and we know how it is used in Europe to damage our reputation for ongoing and upcoming competitions. The first crisis was about postponing by five weeks a design review for a 30-year program. The attacks around that are unfair.

The other controversy was about including local industry. What is the official plan on workshare for Australian companies?

There is no contractual obligation. But we are in a strategic partnership, and there is a clear commitment from Naval Group to reach 60 percent of local content, which is more than the Collins class. And based on our experience in Brazil or in India, we truly believe that at the end of the day we will reach it. It will take time. It is a long, long way to train new industries, to train people, to transfer technology. But we are absolutely committed to Australia, to this partnership to deliver sovereignty, and to deliver this very, very significant percentage of Australian contracts.

Do you think the EU is on a good trajectory to foster defense cooperation?

I don’t know yet. There are two sides of the coin. On the defense side, I would say the progress made in the last three years is absolutely huge. The European Defence Fund and the European Defence Industrial Development Programme, for example, are significant achievements of the previous commission. Is it due to U.S. new policies? Is it due to Brexit? I don’t know. It’s probably a mix of a lot of things.

With the new commission, my understanding is that there is a clear intention to continue in this direction. Nevertheless, there is the budget discussion, which is not completely finished, and where the budgets dedicated to defense are still under threat. We need time to see what the results will be. I’m rather optimistic.

The second issue is more in the civilian-economic area, where we still have a significant issue with the rules for anti-trust in European rules. Those are currently preventing European industry to consolidate at a time when we see the Chinese, Korean and U.S. industries are consolidating. In that context, in the shipbuilding sector, we’re not hearing good things about the Fincantieri/Chantiers de l’Atlantique case. This is a big worry for us, as this would prevent European players to turn into world players.

How will the European Patrol Corvette become a truly European program?

Of course, it cannot be a 27-country project. So Europe has to start with two, three or four. This is a Franco-Italian initiative, which is supported by our two navies and our two governments. It was initiated by Fincanteri and Naval Group, and is carried out by Naviris, our joint venture.

Greece has declared their interest formally to join the program. Spain is starting to study the case, though they have not declared officially. If we are three, four countries, it’s good enough to start.
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[*] posted on 28-3-2020 at 03:22 PM


Australia officialy starts construction of first Arafura class Offshore Patrol Vessel

Posted On Friday, 27 March 2020 10:45

The Government’s $90 billion Continuous Naval Shipbuilding Program has reached a new milestone with construction on the first Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) to be built in Western Australia commencing.


Rendering of Australian Future's OPV based on OPV 80 design (Picture source: Luerssen)

This will be the third of twelve Arafura class OPVs, and the first to be built at the Civmec shipyard in Henderson, Western Australia. The twelve Australian vessels are based on the PV80 design with the first two vessels to be built at ASC's Osborne shipyard in South Australia before production moves to Civmec's Henderson shipyard in Western Australia.

The program will replace and improve upon the capability delivered by the Armidale Class and Cape Class Patrol Boats which entered service in 2005.

The Arafura class offshore patrol vessels (OPV) are being built for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). The new OPVs are intended to replace the existing Armidale class and Cape class patrol boats, Huon class coastal minehunters, and Leeuwin class survey ships in service with the RAN.

The OPVs in the class will be able to perform maritime patrol, response duties, and constabulary missions. The vessels can be customized to perform mine hunting, hydrographic survey, fisheries patrol, disaster relief, and unmanned aerial system (UAS) missions.

The new OPVs will be 80 meters in length with a displacement of 1700 tonnes and a draught of 4 meters. They will be fitted with a 40 mm gun for self-protection, three 8.4 m sea boats, state of the art sensors as well as command and communication systems.

The vessels are able to embark unmanned aerial (UAV), underwater (UUV) and surface vehicles (USV) and can operate larger sea boats which are essential for boarding operations.

The first two vessels are already under construction by Luerssen Australia and ASC in Adelaide.

The remaining ten vessels will be constructed by Luerssen Australia and Civmec at Henderson in Western Australia under the SEA1180 OPV program.
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[*] posted on 28-3-2020 at 03:27 PM


IF it actually had a 57mm Bofors gun up front, and a 40mm Bofors on the hangar roof, I'd be a lot happier than only having a 40mm on the frontal position.

I really don't give a shit if this is an OPV or not, as a nation we don't have enough warships, or vessels easily capable of becoming second stringer warships (with a few add-ons). Just having the 40mm on board is near-worthless...……….as a warship.
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[*] posted on 28-3-2020 at 04:14 PM


Yeah to all that, and I would be 'somewhat' happier if they could use an image of the right vessel (Lürssen OPV 80) in these articles, not their more useful OPV 90. :fake sniffle:

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[*] posted on 28-3-2020 at 07:37 PM


That pic is wrong, which I suspected. This is the correct pic....

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[*] posted on 28-3-2020 at 09:15 PM


Much better! ......... not. :no:

Thanks bug.
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[*] posted on 28-3-2020 at 10:39 PM


One wonders why they are bothering to include LO shaping and IR emissions reduction measures on the exhaust stack?

This isn’t a warship, right? That’s the official line?





In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 30-3-2020 at 07:17 PM


Australia begins construction of third Arafura-class OPV

Gabriel Dominguez, London - Jane's Defence Weekly

29 March 2020


A computer-generated image of the Arafura class, which is being built under Australia’s Sea 1180 Phase 1 programme. Source: Luerssen Australia/ASC

The Australian Department of Defence (DoD) announced on 27 March that construction work had begun on the third of 12 Arafura-class offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) on order for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN).

Unlike the first two ships of the class, which are being built at the Osborne Naval Shipyard in South Australia by Lürssen Australia and government-owned ASC, the vessel is the first of the remaining ten ships of the class set to be built at the Civmec shipyard in Henderson, Western Australia.

"Today's [27 March] milestone reinforces the OPV programme is on schedule to deliver the capability for the Royal Australian Navy when the first ship commences service in 2022," Australian Defence Minister Linda Reynolds was quoted as saying.

The ship is part of an AUD3.6 billion (USD2.5 billion) contract for the OPVs signed in late January 2018 with German shipbuilder Lürssen under Australia's Sea 1180 Phase 1 programme.

Lürssen's subsidiary, Lürssen Australia, is the prime contractor working with shipbuilding partners Civmec and ASC.

Construction of the first vessel, Arafura , began in November 2018, while work on the second started in June 2019.

The new OPVs, which are based on the PV80 design, are set to replace the RAN's fleet of Armidale- and Cape-class patrol boats, and also take on some of the duties associated with the Huon-class minehunters as well as Leeuwin- and Paluma-class survey vessels.

For instance, the RAN has pointed out that the OPV's design "will support specialist mission packages, such as a maritime tactical unmanned aerial system, and into the future, rapid environmental assessment and deployable mine counter measure capabilities".

The class has a standard displacement of 1,640 tonnes, an overall length of 80 m, an overall beam of 13 m, and a hull draught of 4 m.

(320 of 568 words)
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[*] posted on 30-3-2020 at 07:19 PM


So reading between the lines, these vessels are going to be Unmanned Vehicle and Mine Warfare "mother" ships during any wartime scenario?

Still grossly under-armed though!
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[*] posted on 31-3-2020 at 06:42 PM


NUSHIP Sydney Arrives In Her Home Port

(Source: Royal Australian Navy; issued March 27, 2020)


The Air Warfare Destroyer NUSHIP Sydney prepares to berth at Fleet Base East in Sydney for the first time, on 27 March 2020. (RAN photo)

GARDEN ISLAND, NSW --- Sydney residents had a first glimpse of their city’s namesake ship with the arrival of NUSHIP Sydney at Garden Island today.

The last of the three Hobart Class Destroyers joining the Royal Australian Navy’s Fleet entered Sydney Heads and made her way through the harbour.

NUSHIP Sydney’s Commanding Officer, Commander Edward Seymour, said the arrival of the warship was a proud moment for all involved.

“Sydney’s arrival into her homeport is the result of 15 months of hard work by her ship’s company and the product of years of Australian shipbuilding,” Commander Seymour said.

“The Hobart Class Destroyer is the most lethal warship operated by the Royal Australian Navy and will provide capability including air defence to task groups as well as land forces and coastal infrastructure,” he said.

The arrival of NUSHIP Sydney comes exactly 36 years to the day that the people of Sydney saw Guided Missile Frigate HMAS Sydney (IV) arrive for the first time.

This will be the fifth ship to bear the historic name ‘Sydney.’

For Petty Officer Maritime Logistics – Support Operations sailor Dion Georgopoulos, HMAS Sydney (IV) was the first Royal Australian Navy ship that he served in, and he is proud to be a commissioning crew member of Sydney (V) 19 years later.

“It is a surreal feeling knowing that this is probably the beginning of a new legacy where thousands of sailors for years to come will have the privilege of being Sydney crew.”

NUSHIP Sydney was brought into harbour under a Red Ensign and delivered under the direction of civilian contracted mariners, with the ship’s company providing the personnel to operate and maintain necessary systems for safe steaming.

On board were Defence personnel from Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group, members of NUSHIP Sydney’s ship’s company, as well as contractors from Teekay and the Air Warfare Destroyer Alliance.

One of the Navy personnel on board was Leading Seaman Naval Police Coxswain Sue Rochford, who has been looking forward to this moment for over 12 months.

“I’m over the moon, I’m so excited. This is the posting of my career. I’m pretty proud to be part of this historic occasion of driving the ship into Sydney for the first time,” Leading Seaman Rochford said.

The 147-metre warship sailed from Osborne, South Australia, where she was built by the Air Warfare Destroyer Alliance and has been undergoing sea trials before she is commissioned later this year.

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[*] posted on 2-4-2020 at 01:18 PM


1 April 2020

Australia supports shipbuilding capability with new digital course


The Hobart class frigate is one of three air warfare destroyers being built for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). Credit: Nick- D.

Australia has commenced its first digital shipbuilding diploma course as part of the government’s $90bn Naval Shipbuilding Plan.

The Diploma of Digital Technology will help connect workers and information systems to build the $35bn Hunter Class Frigate Programme.

Traditional shipbuilding in Australia will be modified by educating participants on digital technologies.

Following the conclusion of the Air Warfare Destroyer Programme, this pioneering course is expected to retain Australia’s shipbuilding capability.

The course is funded by the Commonwealth and South Australian Government.

The Diploma of Digital Technology is being conducted in partnership with the prime contractor for the Hunter Class Frigate Programme ASC Shipbuilding and Flinders University.

Australia Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said: “This government’s $90bn Naval Shipbuilding Plan is creating thousands of jobs in South Australia, with the workforce expected to grow from 2,500 workers today to more than 6,300 by 2030.

“As we build the world’s most advanced digital shipyards in South Australia, the Morrison government is focused on fostering a world class Australian workforce that can leverage digital information and intelligence systems to facilitate greater innovation.”

The programme will also create opportunities for local workers who will benefit from the continuous naval shipbuilding.

Skills developed by participants during the course duration will support the shipbuilding process.

Due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, students have been permitted to complete the coursework online. Classes will be conducted at Flinders University at the Tonsley Innovation District once the situation is contained.

Australian Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price said: “More than 60 shipbuilding workers from the Hobart Class Air Warfare Destroyer Programme will take part in this programme, teaching workers the digital technology skills that are required to work on the Hunter Class Frigate Programme.”
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[*] posted on 6-4-2020 at 09:29 PM


Interesting article

The extra costs of two Navantia ships drown the auxiliary companies

The extra costs produced in the construction of the AOR ships (Auxiliary Oiler Replenishment, as they are known in the sector), combat supply ships that Navantia is building for the Australian Navy, have sparked a wave of layoffs among the company’s auxiliary companies. public. Historical firms in the Ferrol region, such as Elinco, specialized in electrical systems, and the Iris Cooperative, in charge of assembling pipelines, have already submitted separate extinguishing EREs that affect almost 200 workers in total. The sector expects other companies to follow the same path in the future.

Industry sources explain that these bankruptcies are related to the extra costs that were registered in the construction of the two AOR ships. Normally, these types of ships are built in different blocks. Thus, in one workshop the sheet metal is built and, in another, the interior of the ship. Then both blocks are joined and the process is completed with the ship afloat.

However, according to these sources, in the case of the AORs the construction has been altered by a delay in manufacturing documentation determined because the plans did not contain “sufficient detail”. In practice, this has caused the interior of the ship to be assembled when the ship was already closed, which has significantly increased the construction costs of the auxiliary companies. Some extra costs that are finally unleashing a wave of bankruptcies in the sector.

Navantia refuses to acknowledge this circumstance. The public company is justified by explaining that the contract signed with the Australian Navy establishes that when an element is not assembled in a certain phase it will have to be completed in the next construction phase and that the assemblers will be responsible for this circumstance. But the auxiliary companies denounce that, in reality, these extra costs should be borne by the state company.

These two ships, named “Nuship Supply” and “Stalwart”, were launched in November 2018 and August 2019, respectively. They are based on the “Cantabria” ship of the Spanish Navy, adapted to Australian standards and requirements. This ship deployed with the Royal Australian Navy in 2013, something that allowed the decision of Australia towards Navantia (the other competitor was the South Korean Daewoo).

AORs are logistics ships that can supply three ships at once with fuel, water, supplies, ammunition and other materials. In addition, its capacity to transport containers and the large volume of its tanks, among other benefits, allows this ship to carry out humanitarian and health aid missions to the civilian population in circumstances of catastrophe and environmental defense.

The contract with the Commonwealth of Australia included support for the life cycle of the two AOR ships for a period of five years. In addition, Navantia contemplated the creation of some 1,800 direct and indirect jobs with this contract, valued at 647 million Australian dollars, about 360 million euros.

The construction of the AORs represented the largest contract of the decade for Navantia Ferrol. However, now that the construction of these ships has been completed, the region’s shipyards are in a new period of activity. A situation that has worsened with the coronavirus: the company announced yesterday that it would limit its activity to the maximum in all its work centers. .




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[*] posted on 8-4-2020 at 12:49 AM


Adelaide Departs Sydney to Maintain Navy Preparedness

(Source: Royal Australian Navy; issued April 7, 2020)


A Royal Australian Navy 816 Squadron MH-60 Romeo helicopter prepares to land onboard HMAS Adelaide as she departs Sydney for First of Class Flight Trials. (RAN photo)

HMAS Adelaide has left its home port in Sydney to conduct First of Class Flight Trials for the MH-60R ‘Romeo’ helicopters off the coast of Queensland.

The trials will determine the safe operating limits of the Romeo helicopters on the Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) in a range of sea states and wind speeds at both day and night.

Adelaide’s Commanding Officer, Captain Jonathan Ley, said the training was essential to ensuring Navy maintains its readiness to conduct Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief operations in support of the Australian public and our neighbours if required.

“The results will provide a new standard of operational capability, informing how Navy can employ the MH-60R and LHD together in the future to increase both lethality in combat, and responsiveness during humanitarian assistance and disaster relief tasks,” Captain Ley said.

The Australian Defence Force is supporting Whole-of-Government COVID-19 efforts while maintaining operational preparedness.

Captain Ley said Navy had put in strict measures on its ships to ensure the continuation of essential training while preserving the health and welfare of its people.

All crew on Adelaide were screened for COVID-19 symptoms before departure.

At sea, health threats including communicable diseases like COVID-19, are deliberately considered as part of force health protection.

Major Fleet Units deploy with a medical officer or an appropriately trained medical team who are capable of screening and providing care to any personnel with symptoms.

“Adelaide is currently the Navy’s High Readiness Vessel and may be tasked by the Australian Government to respond to emergencies across the region, including support to civil authorities in Australia, or overseas, in their efforts against COVID-19. It is imperative that we maintain that high readiness capability, and provide reassurance that ADF can respond immediately even in times of crisis,” Captain Ley said.

The MH-60R ‘Romeo’ helicopter, based at 816 Squadron in Nowra, New South Wales, is the Navy's next generation submarine hunter and anti-surface warfare helicopter.

The trials are a crucial testing process to establish the true extent of how the MH-60R operates in the maritime environment on Navy’s various platforms.

Lieutenant Commander Chris Broadbent of the Aircraft Maintenance and Flight Trials Unit said the trials include aviation facilities assessments, equipment calibration, and evaluation of the interface between a particular helicopter type and class of ship.

“While MH-60R aircraft have been used on HMA Ships Adelaide and Canberra for some time, new tests are required to determine what new safe operating limits they can achieve when working together,” Lieutenant Commander Broadbent said.

The flight trials will be conducted in Queensland waters over the coming weeks and include actively chasing the right weather conditions to adequately prove capability.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 8-4-2020 at 11:48 AM


From today's Australian

Australia’s Hunter-class frigates, Attack-class submarines ‘will be delivered on time’

Australia’s defence spending is set to rise well beyond the benchmark 2 per cent of GDP as the Morrison government declares the rebuilding of the nation’s military capabilities will not fall victim to the coronavirus.

The government has recommitted to promised defence mega-platforms, including the $80bn submarines and $35bn future frigate programs, amid signs the post-coronavirus world will be marked by heightened US-China tensions.

The declaration means defence funding will account for a larger-than-anticipated slice of GDP, as the coming coronavirus recession saps national output.

“The Morrison Government is committed to the delivery, on time and on budget, of nine Hunter-class frigates and 12 Attack-class submarines,” Defence Minister Linda Reynolds told The Australian.

She said developing Australia’s naval shipbuilding capability was a sovereign necessity and “COVID‑19 has not changed this requirement”.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said a coronavirus hit to GDP would not affect Defence spending.

“The Government agreed back in the 2016 Defence White Paper that there would be no further adjustments to funding as a result of changes in Australia’s GDP growth estimates,” he said.

The Finance Minister said $135bn in funding had already been locked in for the major shipbuilding programs, including the submarines, future frigates, Guardian-class patrol boats and Arafura offshore patrol vessels, and would not be wound back.

“Defence funding is forecast to reach two per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2020-21, and will continue to grow beyond two per cent of GDP in subsequent years,” Senator Cormann said.

Australian Strategic Policy Institute defence budget analyst Dr Marcus Hellyer said before the coronavirus crisis Defence spending was on track to grow to 2.2 per cent of GDP by 2025-26.

“If economic growth stagnates due to coronavirus, the Defence budget conceivably gets to 2.4 or 2.5 per cent of GDP, if the government keeps to that White Paper funding line,” he said.

Dr Hellyer said even on pre-coronavirus projections, if the government strictly tied the defence budget to 2 per cent of GDP, Defence would face a $5bn-a-year funding shortfall by 2025-26.

That shortfall would grow to $10bn if the economy did not recover quickly from COVID-19.

“That’s not fewer scones at morning tea. It would mean a fundamental change to the ADF’s acquisition plan.”

Centre Alliance Senator Rex Patrick said the government would have to apply fresh pressure to the prime contractors delivering the vessels to ensure vital funds were not sent offshore.

“The government must re-examine these programs to ensure maximum local content, maximum jobs, and maximum economic activity,” the South Australian senator said.

“This is critical also for Australia’s self-reliance – something that the coronavirus has brought back to the forefront of people’s minds.”

Defence sector lobby group Industry Voice said the pandemic had demonstrated “the overwhelming need for a viable Australian industrial base to ensure that whatever challenges are thrown at this country we can ensure that we have a sovereign capability to draw on”.

The recommitment to key Defence programs follows United States’ Indo-Pacific Command funding request to congress for $20bn in new hardware to bolster deterrence against China.

The proposed extra spending on missile systems, missile defence and new radar warning systems in the “priority theatre” reflects US government concerns that military tensions with China will grow as a result of the pandemic.

Senator Reynolds said the impact of the coronavirus pandemic would feed into Defence’s updated analysis of strategic threats and new force structure plan, which are currently under development.

“The government will ensure that its strategic defence policy settings are fit for purpose in response to a range of developments in Australia’s strategic environment,” she said.

Dr Hellyer said the crisis had reaffirmed “the primary role of government is to ensure the security of its citizens”, and Australia “cannot take the assistance of allies and other parties for granted” in times of crisis.

“Anybody who continues to take unlimited US support for granted in all potential crises and conflicts may be in for a rude surprise,” he said.




It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.
It is by the juice of sapho that thoughts acquire speed,
the lips acquire stains,
the stains become a warning.
It is by will alone I set my mind in motion
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CaptainCleanoff
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[*] posted on 8-4-2020 at 06:39 PM


On time sure, just 10-20 years too late.
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ADMK2
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[*] posted on 8-4-2020 at 10:09 PM


Quote: Originally posted by CaptainCleanoff  
On time sure, just 10-20 years too late.


The time will just change is all. Instead of 2035, the new time will be 2040...

So they aren’t 5 years late, they are exactly on schedule...

Just don’t ever ask which schedule...




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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