RAN Hobart bird eye view

The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has integrated a new electronic warfare (EW) system aboard the future guided missile destroyer Hobart to enhance its capability to detect and track threats.

As part of the air warfare destroyer (AWD) capability, the AWD Alliance equipped the first EW antenna over the mast of the Hobart destroyer, which makes it the peak on the ship and offers better range advantage.

AWD Alliance stakeholder engagement general manager commodore Steve Tiffen said: "This state-of-the-art EW system is a critical capability for the Navy.

"It is a passive system that is able to distinguish between friendly, neutral and hostile threats within seconds.

"This particular EW system, which is also being fitted onto the LHD and Anzac class ships, will significantly improve the Navy’s tactical advantage, by increasing the distance from which threats can be detected."

The AWD is aimed at identifying threats such as enemy ships, aircraft and missiles at the horizon. It also increases situational awareness, further supporting the earlier engagement of threats.

Tiffen added: "The EW system expands the types of threats that can be detected to encompass the most modern types of radar and communications systems.

"This will ultimately allow for more time for the crew to react and improve their ability to control the battlespace."

The EW system beefs up the vessel’s overall defence ability by offering threat and situational information. The details enable the launch of off-board counter-measures, such as the Nulka decoy, which guards the ship from missiles.

Image: An aerial view from a crane of the electronic warfare (EW) antenna being integrated aboard the RAN’s Hobart destroyer. Photo: courtesy of the Air Warfare Destroyer Alliance.

Defence Technology