Home Asia Pacific Fifth Australian frigate verifies AMCAP upgrade with missile launch

Fifth Australian frigate verifies AMCAP upgrade with missile launch

Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Toowoomba fires an Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile during a workup period off the coast of Western Australia. Photo: Australian defense ministry

Royal Australian Navy’s Anzac-class frigate HMAS Toowoomba has marked the official completion of a major upgrade with a missile-firing drill off the coast of Western Australia.

Toowoomba successfully fired an Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM) for the first time since completing the Anzac Midlife Capability Assurance Program (AMCAP) upgrade.

Toowoomba completed the 18-month AMCAP upgrade in April 2022, which included out-of-water maintenance and significant capability upgrades to radar, communication and platform systems.

Toowoomba is one of five Anzac-class frigates to complete the AMCAP upgrade, providing enhanced capability to the Navy’s fleet.

The upgrade provides the frigates with a CEAFAR2-L long-range phased-array by replacing the ageing AN/SPS-49 long range air search radar. Other works include refurbished propulsion control, fridges, waste management and water production.

“The purpose of Toowoomba’s ESSM firing was to verify combat system performance in the detection, tracking and engagement of maneuverable targets at sea,” Toowoomba’s weapons electrical engineering officer, Lieutenant Commander Kieran Davis, said it was a significant part of maintaining operational readiness, said.

“The safe and successful execution of this firing involved synchronization from many parts of ship, including the weapons electrical department, combat systems operators, warfare officers and the navigation team.”

The upgrade program is being undertaken by Navy and the Warship Asset Management Agreement Alliance, which is a four-way alliance between the Commonwealth’s Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group, Saab Australia, BAE Systems and Naval Ship Management Australia.