RAN upgrades Anzac-class frigates with new sonar processing system

HMAS Anzac is berthed alongside HMAS Arunta at Fleet Base West for the first time post ANZAC Mid-Life Capability Assurance Plan (AMCAP) upgrade. Source Royal Australian Navy.

The Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN) project to upgrade its Anzac-class frigates with the sovereign designed Broadband Sonar Advanced Processing System (BSAPS) under the SEA 1408 Phase 2 programme is almost complete.

Under the project, the existing sonar processing system is being replaced with BSAPS while still utilising the Spherion B Hull Mounted Sonar Wet End.

Defence Science and Technology (DST), Saab Australia, BAE Systems, and Thales Australia collaborated to develop the BSAPS.

Through the Defence Industry Realisation Fund, the BSAPS project commenced as a submission from DST.

The ships were equipped with the existing fitted sonar processing system as part of the original build programme in the 1990s.

Combat Systems deputy director Commander Danielle Radnidge said: “The submission was picked up and commercialised by Thales Australia, and showcases Australia’s world class ability to convert science and technology concepts into successful commercial enterprises.”

Six of the RAN’s eight Anzac-class frigates have so far been upgraded with a system more suited to modern submarine and torpedo threats.

Under the SEA 1408 Phase 2 programme, the sonar passive capability and Combat Management System integration is being enhanced.

Sonar functionality levels and equipment reliability are also being improved in this phase.

The new sonar system has been integrated with the 9LV Combat Management System, and over the years has successfully demonstrated its capability.

This technology has provided the navy’s Anzac-class frigates with an advanced anti-submarine warfare and torpedo self defence capability.

Furthermore, as this technology provides the navy with an advanced, sovereign Hull Mount Sonar capability, RAN frigates stand to gain exceptional underwater awareness.

The project occurred through the Warship Asset Management Agreement Alliance with the Anzac Ships Program Office and SEA 1408 Project Office.

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