Defence Minister Linda Reynolds and Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price announced that Raytheon Australia has signed a deed of standing offer with the Department of Defence to provide naval surface ship combat system engineering support services for up to six years.
Under this new agreement, Raytheon Australia will support Defence's upgrades to surface ship combat systems by providing engineering and logistics services.
This will capitalise on existing knowledge, skills, systems and processes developed by Raytheon Australia through the Hobart Class destroyer acquisition program, while continuing to support our Navy with the world's best combat systems technology.
Raytheon Australia managing director Michael Ward welcomed the announcement, saying, "I commend both the government and Department of Defence for their forward-looking decision to engage a combat system engineering partner to reduce risks for future surface ship programs. As the combat systems integrator for the Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD) program, Raytheon Australia has more than 15 years of expertise in this field.
"Having lived the full evolution of Australia's first truly sovereign shipbuilding program through AWD, we understand the importance of early combat system planning, architecting, integrating and testing. This early engagement is particularly critical in reducing the risks for large-scale programs such as surface ships – as proven by the first-time success of the AWD combat system."
Both the Hobart Class destroyers and Hunter Class frigates operate combat systems centred around Aegis, with Hobart incorporating the AN/SPY-1 radar, and Hunter incorporating a CEAFAR radar suite. Aegis is a fully integrated combat system, providing full 360 degree, 3D tracking capacity, and is capable of simultaneously defending against attack from land targets, submarines and surface ships while automatically protecting the fleet against aircraft cruise missiles and ballistic missiles.
This integrated combat system serves to establish Aegis as a central component of the Integrated Air and Missile Defence (IAMD), providing robust anti-air warfare (AAW) capabilities, with ballistic missile defence (BMD) capabilities.
Aegis, currently on its ninth baseline (BL9), has continually improved and added new capabilities to meet new threats, executed new missions and integrated technology.
Raytheon Australia successfully conducted the combat system integration for the Hobart Class vessels, with the third and final vessel, NUSHIP Sydney, currently 95 per cent complete ahead of schedule at the ASC Shipyards in Osborne.
The $35 billion SEA 5000 Hunter Class frigate program will see Australia's eight Anzac Class frigates replaced with nine Hunter Class vessels, to be built by BAE Systems at Osborne Shipyard in South Australia from 2020. The project is expected to create 4,000 jobs.