Technically taming Taipans

This article has photo gallery Published on LCDR Helen Ward (author), CPL Craig Barrett (photographer)

Location(s): HMAS Albatross, Avalon International Airshow 2017

Topic(s): HMAS Albatross, MRH-90 Taipan

Leading Seaman Aviation Technician Avionics Daile Tomkinson on the ramp of an 808 Squadron MRH-90 Taipan Helicopter on display at the Australian International Airshow at Avalon. (photo: CPL Craig Barrett)
Leading Seaman Aviation Technician Avionics Daile Tomkinson on the ramp of an 808 Squadron MRH-90 Taipan Helicopter on display at the Australian International Airshow at Avalon.

Maintaining a helicopter that can fly up to 300 kilometres per hour and still take off weighing more than 10,000 kilograms fully loaded is the core business of some of Navy’s technical sailors.

To some, is the MRH-90 multi-role helicopter but to those who know her intimately, she’s a Taipan – capable and snaking with essential avionics.

The Royal Australian Navy’s Taipans fly out of 808 Squadron at HMAS Albatross, in Nowra, New South Wales providing a maritime support capability essential to the seagoing fleet.

Leading Seaman Aviation Technician Avionics Daile Tomkinson is one of the specialist maintainers working at the squadron.

“I am really proud of my role in the Navy and know that my work contributes directly to keeping the Taipans airworthy,” Leading Seaman Tomkinson said.

“I am very fortunate to have state-of-the-art integrated avionics in the Taipan.

“Being a maintainer is a very rewarding career, you are working with the latest technology and receive world class training: I encourage anyone who asks to give it a go.”

Leading Seaman Tomkinson will soon be taking on a different role, as part of Navy’s ongoing skills improvement program.

Her new position is in Brisbane with the Airbus Group Australia Pacific, and the industry placement will provide her (and Navy) with enhanced skills to conduct more complex maintenance of the aircraft.

“You never stop learning in the Navy - I say give it a go, be open to new ideas and don’t be afraid of change,” she said.

The Navy continually strives to strengthen relationships with industry and these collaborative arrangements provide positive outcomes for both organisations.

If you’d like to find out more about Avionics roles in Navy visit http://www.defencejobs.gov.au/navy/jobs/AviationTechnicianAvionics/