Hunter class frigate program of Australia begins the prototyping phase
The Hunter-class frigate programme of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has officially entered the prototyping process, marking a key milestone for the National Naval Shipbuilding Enterprise.
With the Australian steel cutting ceremony, the prototyping process was officially started.
Five representative ship blocks will be produced and built using Australian steel, and the systems, processes, facilities and personnel competencies will be developed and tested, providing a solid operational basis before construction on the first frigate of the Hunter class begins in 2022, BAE Systems Australia explained.
“To start prototyping just two years after the contract to deliver the Hunter programme was signed in 2018, is an incredible achievement. The pace of the programme has been swift. We have moved into a modern, digitally advanced shipyard, progressed the design of the ship and significantly expanded our workforce," commented BAE Systems Australia CEO Gabby Costigan.
In 2018, under the SEA 5000 initiative, the Australian Government awarded BAE Systems a contract worth A$ 35bn ($ 24.37bn) to develop nine Hunter-class frigates for RAN.
The current Anzac-class frigates will replace the latest class of anti-submarine warfare warships. It is based on the Type 26 'Global Combat Ship' concept from BAE Systems.
Maritime Business World