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Australia building new underwater tracking range for ASW edge

An Australian Submarine conducts personnel transfers with a MRH-90 Taipan helicopter.
Royal Australian Navy file photo

The Australian government has announced its plans to build a new maritime underwater tracking range that will provide the Navy with sub-surface tracking capability and optimized preparedness.

Located in Western Australia, the project will replace the original tracking range system that ceased operating in 2012.

Through a series of sensors, the tracking range will capture and relay information on the location and movement of assets that are operating within the tracking field.

Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC said the capability will provide Navy with vital information on the performance of its maritime warfare assets and tactics.

“By investing in technology which will strengthen our understanding of the best and most effective way to use our weapons, decoys and platforms, we are enabling our submarines and other maritime warfighting capabilities to operate with superiority while protecting Australia’s interests,” Minister Reynolds said.

“Similar to a three-dimensional laboratory, the range will allow our navy, our allies and partners to fine‑tune our anti‑submarine warfare tactics to deliver the technology edge needed in the future.

“The delivery of this sovereign capability is also expected to provide a much‑needed boost for Australian industry by creating opportunities for businesses to participate in the installation and ongoing sustainment of the range.”

In addition to the new tracking range, Australia is also procuring a new deperming facility as part of Project SEA1350 Phase 2. The navy wants an innovative ‘over-run’ solution that would replace the traditional deperming process of wrapping the entire body of a ship or submarine in a massive wire coil and passing electricity through the coil to reduce the magnetic ‘signature’ of the vessel.