New baseline design for Australian Navy’s Hunter-class frigate established

The year-long System Definition Review (SDR), involving work by BAE Systems’ engineering teams in Australia and the UK, has established a new baseline design for the Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN) Hunter-class frigate program.

As explained, the SDR is the second major evaluation of the ship’s design and demonstrates how it accommodates the range of capabilities required by the Australian Government. These capabilities include the Aegis and Australian Interface Combat Management Systems, the CEAFAR2 phased array radar and integration of the Seahawk Romeo Maritime Combat Helicopter. 

Photo by: BAE Systems

These changes introduce significant combat system capability, ready to meet the RAN’s needs, BAE Systems noted.

“In complex naval shipbuilding terms, a successful Systems Definition Review means that you’ve successfully established a Functional Baseline from which you can further develop and integrate the design against the Mission System Specification set by the Customer – and we’ve done just that,” BAE Systems Maritime Australia Managing Director, Craig Lockhart said.

“It’s taken a lot of hard work and engineering ingenuity to get us to the point where, together with the Royal Australian Navy, we can objectively look at our design and where it sits relative to requirements.”

After closing out the actions identified in this review, the Hunter-class frigate program will progress to the next major engineering review, the Preliminary Design Review, which is a technical assessment that ensures the design is operationally effective, and detailed design and planning can commence.

Recently, BAE Systems transferred more than two million digital artefacts from the UK to Australia.

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The first prototyping unit has also recently been completed at the Osborne shipyard, underscoring the strong progress on the Hunter program.

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