Arunta first upgraded frigate to fire missiles at RIMPAC

This article has photo gallery Published on LCDR Todd Fitzgerald (author), LSIS Ernesto Sanchez (photographer)

Location(s): Hawaii, USA

Topic(s): HMAS Arunta (F151), Exercise RIMPAC

HMAS Arunta executes a live missile firing off the coast of Hawaii during RIMPAC 2020. (photo: LSIS Ernesto Sanchez)
HMAS Arunta executes a live missile firing off the coast of Hawaii during RIMPAC 2020.

The first frigate to complete the Anzac Midlife Capability Assurance Program (AMCAP) upgrade, HMAS Arunta, has successfully fired surface-to-air missiles at Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) in Hawaii.

Conducted alongside ships from Canada and the United States, Commanding Officer HMAS Arunta Commander Troy Duggan said the firing demonstrated the lethality of the upgraded Anzac Class frigate and its world-class Australian systems.

“This is the first time an AMCAP frigate has participated in RIMPAC, and demonstrates the capability of the new phased array radar suite as an integrated sensor for the combat system,” Commander Duggan said.

Completed in 2019, the upgrade provides the Anzac Class frigates the first CEAFAR2-L long-range phased-array air search radar. This world-leading radar technology has been designed in Australia to provide long-range situational awareness to the ship and allied units.

Missile firings are conducted on the Pacific Missile Range Facility in Hawaii.

The range used remote-controlled drones to simulate missile attack profiles against Arunta, and the ship engaged them with surface-to-air missiles.

Commander Duggan said the ship’s company had trained extensively for the event.

“These sorts of complex warfighting exercises with multinational partners demonstrate that the Royal Australian Navy is able to operate seamlessly with other highly advanced navies in our region,” he said.

HMA Ships HobartStuartArunta and Sirius are taking part in Exercise RIMPAC in Hawaii.

Ten nations, 22 surface ships, one submarine, multiple aircraft, and about 5300 personnel are participating in this iteration of the biggest international naval exercise.

It includes forces from Australia, Brunei, Canada, France, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, and the United States.

Participating forces are exercising a wide range of capabilities, including multinational anti-submarine warfare, maritime intercept operations, and live-fire training events.

Imagery for RIMPAC 2020 is available for viewing/download from the Navy Image Library.