The second Australian Anzac Class frigate has started an upgrade designed to keep the eight Anzacs in service until they are replaced by the new Hunter Class frigates next decade.
This work, termed the Midlife Capability Assurance Program (AMCAP) upgrade, is being performed at the BAE Systems Australia yard at Henderson, Western Australia, by the Warship Asset Management Agreement (WAMA) alliance.
The WAMA partnership was launched in 2016 to support the Anzacs and includes BAE Systems Australia, Saab Australia, Naval Ship Management and the Commonwealth of Australia. It’s worth more than $2 billion over eight years.
BAE Systems Australia chief executive Gabby Costigan said the
upgrade of the Anzac fleet through the WAMA alliance demonstrated the breadth and depth of work of BAE Systems Australia in sustaining the Anzacs over more than two decades.
“BAE Systems is an Australian industry leader in maritime sustainment. We are very proud of the skilled workforce capacity that we have grown to meet the technical challenges of maritime sustainment,” she said.
HMAS Anzac joins sister ships HMAS Perth and HMAS Arunta, the first time three warships have been on the Henderson hardstand.
Anzac will be the second ship to receive the AMCAP upgrade.
That includes an upgraded ventilation system, new sewage system, improvements to the diesel engines to improve power and efficiency, replacement of the air search radar with the Australian CEA L-Band radar and replacement of the full ship communications suite.
HMAS Arunta, the first to undergo the AMCAP upgrade, most recently had her old mast removed to make way for the installation of the new air search radar system.
Her new mast is currently being manufactured by BAE Systems and will be installed at the end of October.
Canberra company CEA Technologies is responsible for developing the new air search radar system, which complements the existing anti-ship missile defence system.
HMAS Arunta will undock before the end of the year after having spent more than 12 months on the hardstand.
She will then undertake sea trials ahead of a planned return to service in 2019.
The remaining seven ships will be back in service by 2023.