The modern Royal Australian Navy (RAN) fields a fleet of over thirty-five primary warships that fulfill requirements in the submarine, destroyer, frigate, mine warfare, OPV, and amphibious assault roles. The collection of guided-missile frigates itself yields eight hulls all built to the ANZAC-class. With the oldest of the series being HMAS ANZAC (FFH-150) itself, the group has four hulls that are twenty-years old or less - the youngest of these being HMAS Perth (FFH-157).
Perth was laid down by Tenix Defence on July 24th, 2003 and launched on march 20th, 2004. Commissioned on August 26th, 2006, she remains in active status today (2022) and currently homeports out of Fleet Base West. She fights under the motto of "Fight and Flourish" and carries nine inherited Battle Stars from hulls in previous service bearing the same name.
The warship displaces 4,200 tons (short) and has a bow-to-stern length of 387 feet, a beam measuring 49 feet, and a draught down to 13 feet. Installed power is comprised of 1 x General Electric LM2500 gas turbine of 30,000 horsepower with 2 x MTU 12V1163TB83 diesel engines developing an additional 8,840 horsepower. With this arrangement, the warship can reach speeds of 27 knots under ideal conditions and range out to 6,000 nautical miles. The configuration is recognized as a COmbined Diesel-Or-Gas (CODOG) propulsion scheme allowing the vessel to switch to either powerplant(s) as needed to achieve fuel economy under dash and cruise actions.
Aboard is a complement of about 170 officers and enlisted. A small air arm is supported for the single Sikorsky MH-60R "Seahawk" helicopter operated from the stern-based helipad with integrated hangar area.
Installed systems include a hull-mounted and towed sonar array unit, the Raytheon AN/SPS-49(V)8 ANZ C/D-band air-search radar, and the CEA Technologies CEAFAR Active, Phased Array Radar (APAR) on S-band. A full electronics and physical countermeasures suite is installed that includes launchable decoys and radar interception.
The armament suite is led by a single 5" Mk 45 Mod 2 turreted deck gun over the forecastle. 2 x Rafael "Mini Typhoon" Close-In Weapon Systems (CIWSs) are installed for point defense. 2 x 4-cell Harpoon Block II anti-ship missiles are featured near midships and the hull also embeds the Mk 41 Mod 5 Vertical Launch System (VLS) housing "Sea Sparrow" and "Evolved Sea Sparrow" medium-ranged Surface-to-Air Missiles (SAMs). Beyond this are 2 x 324mm Mk 32 triple torpedo launchers to contend with surface and undersea threats at range.
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1 x 5" (127mm) Mk 45 Mod 2 turreted deck gun.
2 x 4-cell Harpoon anti-ship missile launchers.
1 x Mk 41 Mod 5 Vertical Launch System (VLS) for "Sea Sparrow" and "Evolved Sea Sparrow" (ESSM) medium-ranged Surface-to-Air Missiles (SAMs).
2 x Rafael Close-In Weapon Systems (CIWSs) fitting 12.7mm Heavy Machine Guns (HMGs).
2 x 324mm triple torpedo tubes.
1 x Sikorsky MH-60R "Seahawk" navalized helicopter launched / supported from the stern-based helipad / hangar deck area.
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Image from the Australian Ministry of Defense; Public Release.
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