NUSHIP Adelaide

The Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN) second landing helicopter dock (LHD) ship, Nuship Adelaide, has docked at BAE Systems‘ Williamstown shipyard after successfully completing initial sea trials.

The vessel will now undergo final outfitting and integration activities at the shipyard.

Designed to test the ship’s systems, the first set of sea trials focused mainly on platform systems.

BAE Systems Maritime director Bill Saltzer said: "During sea trials, we essentially test the ship and all its systems in the ‘at-sea’ environment in which it will be expected to operate in the service of the Royal Australian Navy.

"It is also the first opportunity for the new officers and crew to be engaged in on-board operations following the extensive training program that they undergo at our state-of-the-art training facility in Mascot, NSW."

"During sea trials, we essentially test the ship and all its systems in the ‘at-sea’ environment."

The vessel will undergo a second period of sea trials in August, which will focus on communication and combat systems. Delivery of the vessel is expected to be in the end of September this year.

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RAN received the first of two LHD vessels, Nuship Canberra, in October last year. Both vessels are capable of being deployed for large-scale humanitarian and disaster relief missions.

The 27,000t warships are claimed to be the largest vessels ever built for the RAN. The vessels offer a maximum cruise speed of more than 20k and a 9,000nm range.

Capable of carrying 1,000 crew members, the 757ft-long LHD vessels can also accommodate helicopters and water craft, together with their weapons, ammunition, vehicles, and stores.

Image: RAN’s second LHD ship, Nuship Adelaide, docked at BAE Systems’ Williamstown shipyard. Photo: courtesy of BAE Systems.