Wednesday, September 9, 2015

A new home, new combat capability and new paint

Seaman Boatswains Mate Stephanie Pannell making ready a line on the forecastle of HMAS Warramunga as the ship comes alongside Fleet Base West  after undocking post Anti-Ship Missile Defence upgrade at Henderson, Western Australia. (photo: LSIS Lee-Anne Mack)
Seaman Boatswains Mate Stephanie Pannell making ready a line on the forecastle of HMAS Warramunga as the ship comes alongside Fleet Base West after undocking post Anti-Ship Missile Defence upgrade at Henderson, Western Australia.

After 14 years of naval service, HMAS Warramunga has a new homeport – Fleet Base East, Sydney. 
The ship was welcomed to Garden Island on 4 September by Commander Surface Forces, Commodore Lee Goddard, Command Warrant Officer Steve Downey and around 80 families of ship’s company.
Warramunga recently completed the cutting edge Anti Ship Missile Defence upgrade. She is the fourth and the latest Royal Australian Navy Anzac class frigate to complete the upgrade, which involves a major overhaul and upgrade of the ship’s sensors and weapons capability, much of it Australian.
As part of the ongoing Anzac fleet upgrade process, Parramatta’s crew left Sydney in January, for the purpose of docking HMAS Parramatta and bringing Warramunga back to capability.
After seven months away from Sydney, Seaman Boatswains Mate Stephanie Pannell said it was good to be home.
“It was great to be involved in Warramunga’s upgrade, but it is terrific to now be back in Sydney,” Seaman Pannell said.
While Warramunga was the fourth ship to receive the upgrade, she was the first major fleet unit to receive the new haze grey paint scheme, which will help Navy meet modern warfighting and regional environmental conditions.
Warramunga was also the first to be fitted with the new Exelis ES-3701 Electronic Signals Monitoring system. The system will significantly improve the Royal Australian Navy‘s capability to detect radars from other surface ships and aircraft. 
Petty Officer Electronic Warfare Sean Armstrong says it is exciting to be one of the first to work with the new system.
“The new capability is very exciting to work with. 
“It provides situational awareness, targeting, self-protection and surveillance,” Petty Officer Armstrong said.
The new system fit also provides commonality with other large warships in Australia’s fleet, as the system is also being deployed in the Canberra class amphibious ships and the Hobart class destroyers.

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