Electronics career provides excitement

This article has photo gallery Published on LSIS Helen Frank (author), LSIS Helen Frank (photographer)

Location(s): Hobart, Tasmania

Able Seaman Electronics Technician Georgie Sharp in the Secondary Radio Transmitter room onboard HMAS Canberra. (photo: LSIS Helen Frank)
Able Seaman Electronics Technician Georgie Sharp in the Secondary Radio Transmitter room onboard HMAS Canberra.

While working the nine to five grind of the retail industry, Hobart girl, Georgie Sharp realised she needed more adventure so she packed her bags and joined the Navy.

She completed high school at Mt Carmel College and went on to study hospitality. In 2013, aged 20, she replaced the tools of the hospitality trade with those of a Navy Electronics Technician.

"I was looking for something exciting and challenging to do with my life," Able Seaman Sharp said.

Navy Electronics Technicians work on a range of naval equipment including electronic weapon systems, communications and navigation equipment.

Able Seaman Sharp was posted to HMAS Canberra directly from her category training.

"Posting straight to a ship was exciting but nerve wracking as well," she said.

Commissioned in November 2014, Canberra has a crew of 400 and is capable of embarking over 1,000 troops and their cargo that can be landed ashore by helicopters or state of the art landing craft.
The 27,000 tonne ship is one of the largest vessels ever constructed for the Navy and are capable of providing the Australian Defence Force with one of the most sophisticated air-land-sea amphibious deployment systems in the world. The class is capable of complex amphibious operations including non-combatant evacuations and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations.

Able Seaman Sharp is currently responsible in helping to keep all the internal communication systems on the ship working.

"I work on the hand held radios, speakers, broadcast and alarm and the integrated voice communications system," she said.

"I do a lot of fault finding and I often have to try different things to get the equipment working.

"We also do planned maintenance to keep all the gear functioning well."

Able Seaman Sharp said the she has really enjoyed her job onboard Canberra where she has put her training into practice.

"They teach us so much about the equipment but it's so good to come to a ship and do it for real," she said.

"I also really enjoy the damage control aspect of being at sea.

"I'm part of a fire fighting team and it's rewarding to do something that challenges me."

Canberra has been working towards Final Operational Certification due in 2017, exercising off the New South Wales coast. The ship's company recently took a short break in Hobart where Able Seaman Sharp caught up with her family.
"My parents, sisters and brother all still live in Hobart," she said.

"I'm went straight to my Dad's place for a home cooked meal and to sleep in my old room again."