• NUSHIP Sydney undertaking sea trials.
    NUSHIP Sydney undertaking sea trials. Defence

The third Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD), NUSHIP Sydney, is on track to be delivered to the Navy in February 2020 after completing sea trials.

Sydney is the third and final ship being delivered by the Air Warfare Destroyer Alliance, which includes Defence, Raytheon Australia, and ASC Shipbuilding supported by Navantia Australia.

Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said the success of sea trials represents a significant step towards the ship’s delivery.

Sydney will enter into service early next year, and with her sister-ships HMA Ships Hobart and Brisbane, they will be the most potent warships to date,” Minister Reynolds said.

“By using a combination of Australian and globally proven technologies, these highly capable warships are truly world-class and will allow us to work even closer with our allies.”

Following sea trials, final production work including the integration of the MH60-R helicopter, will be completed ahead of the ship's provisional acceptance into service in February 2020.

That anticipated date of delivery is several months earlier than previously scheduled thanks to a decision to modify the storage of Mk54 torpedoes and AGM-114N Hellfire missiles for the ship’s MH-60R naval combat helicopter as part of the construction process rather than after its completion.

The modifications include racks for Hellfire and Mk54 storage, enhanced safety measures and the installation of blowout doors for the magazine. Additional magazine space will enable flight-in-air material to be fitted to the Mk 54 in the magazine rather than the hangar.

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