Warfighting Warramunga

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Adam Grover (author), ABIS Kayla Hayes (photographer)

Location(s): Darwin, Northern Territory

Topic(s): HMAS Warramunga (F152), Exercise KAKADU

HMAS Warramunga fires their Mk 45 5 inch gun the Northern Australian Exercise Area during Exercise KAKADU 2016. (photo: ABIS Kayla Hayes)
HMAS Warramunga fires their Mk 45 5 inch gun the Northern Australian Exercise Area during Exercise KAKADU 2016.

From hunting submarines by moonlight to engaging and defeating surface and air targets by day, HMAS Warramunga is proving to be a highly potent warship as she continues to participate in Exercise KAKADU 16 and lead Combined Task Group 628.1. 

Reflecting the increasingly sophisticated and complex scenarios of Exercise KAKADU 16, HMAS Warramunga, working with HMCS Vancouver, successfully denied a submarine from disrupting simulated shipping in the exercise area. 

In a coordinated and orchestrated daytime gun firing serial, Warramunga, again working with Vancouver, as well as Singapore Navy Ships Valiant and Victor, engaged a surface target with her five-inch gun. 

In the warfighting heart of the ship, the Operations Room, Warramunga’s officers and sailors work closely together to identify and destroy the surface target. The intricate and deliberate communication between staff in the Operations Room and the Bridge ensured the success of the serial. The efficacy and potency of Waramunga was comprehensively established in the gunnery serial.

Warramunga’s Commanding Officer, Commander Dugald Clelland, is proud of the performance of the ships company during KAKADU 16. 

“The determination of Warramanga’s crew to aggressively engage threats in the exercise areas displays our ability to project power at sea. The results of our simulated warfighting confirm Warramunga’s lethality,’ he said. 

“I am privileged to lead a highly professional agile and adaptive crew. 

Warramunga’s sustained rate of effectiveness in warfighting during KAKADU 16 will ensure our future operational effectiveness.” 

Showing her versatility, the surface engagement was followed by an air defence serial as a simulated attack was undertaken by Royal Australian Air Force Hawk 127 aircraft. 

Warramunga’s world class sensor’s including the new Phased Array Radar technology allowed the threats to be destroyed by a combination of the simulated use of the Evolved Sea Sparrow point defence missile as well as the utilisation of the Nulka active missile decoy system. 

The contribution of sailors including Able Seaman Bosons Mate Matthew Barton on the ship’s 50 calibre machine guns, strengthens Warramunga’s reputation as a versatile war fighter. 

“Defending the ship with the 50 calibre machine gun is a massive privilege and responsibility,” Able Seaman Barton said. 

“The design of the weapon long predates me, but there is no doubting its accuracy and potency.” 

While undertaking the major serials of KAKADU 16, Warramunga’s crew continued to undertake a wide range of daily activities including weapons trade testing, Ship Medical Emergency Team training and Boarding Party training. 

Exercise KAKADU 16, is the largest maritime exercise hosted in Australian waters. It involves participating elements from 19 nations and concludes on September 23.