The Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN) first Hobart-class air warfare destroyer (AWD), Hobart, has successfully completed builder sea trials at Techport Australia in Adelaide.

Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD) Alliance general manager Lloyd Beckett said that the sea trials have successfully evaluated the vessel’s hull, propulsion and navigation systems.

AWD Alliance programme manager commodore Craig Bourke said: “The completion of Hobart’s Builder Sea Trials is a significant step towards delivery of the first AWD to defence and the most capable warships ever operated by the Royal Australian Navy.”

"The completion of Hobart’s Builder Sea Trials is a significant step towards delivery of the first AWD."

Expected to be delivered to the Australian Department of Defence next year, Hobart is slated to undergo the next phase of advanced trials in early 2017 to test its combat and communications systems.

Construction of the 146.7m long Hobart commenced in 2010 and was officially launched last year.

With a displacement capacity of 7,000t, the Hobart-class destroyers are fitted with Aegis weapon system baseline 8, AN/SPY-1D(V) phased array radar, horizon search radar, advanced Harpoon weapon control systems, two Quad launchers.

Australian Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne said that the second destroyer Brisbane is set for launch in December this year, while hull consolidation work is currently underway on destroyer Sydney.

The AWD Alliance is tasked to deliver three Hobart-class DDG destroyers to RAN, and has collaborated with shipbuilder ASC, mission systems integrator Raytheon Australia and the Government’s Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group for the programme.

ASC Shipbuilding CEO Mark Lamarre said: “Moving forward, the highly skilled ASC workforce will continue to consolidate and outfit the remaining two destroyers Brisbane and Sydney, implementing lessons learnt from Hobart’s build along the way, and creating significant improvement in our nation’s shipbuilding capability.”

Image: AWD Hobart completes first sea trials. Photo: courtesy of Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD) Alliance.