HMAS Melbourne has launched an Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile in a test off the east coast of Australia recently.
The missile is a short range, self defence weapon, optimised for anti-ship missile defence.
In the recent test, Melbourne’s combat system tracked and engaged, a Pheonix Jet unmanned aerial vehicle target drone operated by Air Affairs Australia.
Melbourne's Air Warfare Officer, Lieutenant Rhys Ryan said the activity went smoothly.
“The firing took months of preparation to understand the combat system, and how it’s various components integrated with each other,” he said.
Able Seaman Electronics Technician Nazmi Kenar performed the role of Fire Control Officer, responsible for coordinating and controlling the full weapon systems under the direction of the Air Warfare Officer.
He said the missile firing was very satisfying.
“We had weeks of preparation including late night drills and early morning starts, but in the end it was all was very successful and very much worth it,” he said.
Lieutenant Ryan said the missile firing proved that the ship is capable of defending itself in a hostile environment.
“Our mission is to fight and win at sea, and the test was not only important in proving our combat system works but to give confidence to our ship’s company in our war fighting ability,” he said.
The test was conducted as part of Melbourne’s three week sea qualification trials following a period of dry docking and maintenance for much of the year.
Melbourne returned to Australia in February after a six month Middle Eastern deployment including more than 50 boarding operations and seizing almost a tonne of heroin.