FEATURE | In for the long haul (part 3): How far can you push an Anzac?

As I discussed in part 2 of this series, the Anzacs are high-quality frigates. They will likely age gradually but gracefully over the next 24 years on their journey to eventual retirement. But the issue of quantity might be more problematic than quality. Often you just need presence: a ship at sea in the right location, whether patrolling a sea lane, monitoring a patch of ocean, or just waving a flag. No matter how good its quality is, a ship can’t be in two places at once.

FEATURE | Is this the near future of Australian naval shipbuilding?

This is an exciting time for Australian naval shipbuilding. Two patrol vessel programs are underway, the Anzac-class frigate midlife capability assurance program (AMCAP) is completing the first of eight ships, and Hunter-class future frigates are to start construction in 2020, running into the 2030s for nine frigates. The air warfare destroyers are joining the fleet, while in the submarine world both the Collins-class life extension and the Shortfin Barracuda projects are generating a lot of commentary but no construction contracts yet.

FEATURE | Indo-Pacific: are the British coming back?

The British Royal Navy looks set to make a significant reappearance in the Indo-Pacific after the long distraction of conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Australian decision to buy nine BAE Systems Type 26 ASW frigates is the latest in a flurry of indications suggesting the UK has an increased strategic interest in the region, kept alive through strong cultural, historic, and defence ties.

  • Published in Naval
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